[Boston—Thursday, 3 December 1868]

Dec. 3. Wonderfully quiet days. Long walks (not in the country alas! which would be real refreshment, nevertheless, walks) under cold but lovely skies and still evenings over books. The best time we have had since our return. We dream of England which means chiefly seeing Dickens again. We did not go to the first ball of the season which came off last night. I would have gone to chaperone Mabel Lowell but except for that, lacked interest in the occasion. Gen. Grant was there for a few moments.

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