[Boston—Monday, 4 May 1868]

May 4th A bright sun at length and fresh West Wind but we are both of us ill with colds and have scarcely sense enough to recognize anything. We still remember in our uprisings and downsittings the happiness of those wanderers who are at length at rest in their own homes.

Sometimes this strange world seems like such a phantom scene to me that I feel like passing my hands before my eyes to be quite sure—but again, and this is truth, however unreal these realities may be to us, all the force of God’s spirit working in us, all the undivided energy is required to do the work of the hours.

I am reading Madame Roland steadily but she appears to me a far less noble type of woman than I had supposed. The honesty of her mémoires however is something “redoutabble” and I suppose I hardly allow enough to the fact that she is writing of herself. Mr. Emerson has returned from N.Y. He popped into Jamie’s room saying “How is the guardian and maintainer of us all?”

They soon “fell to talking” of New York. “What a dear place!” said J.T.F. “Yes and Mrs Botta is the dearest creature in it” replied the philosopher, prettily turning from J.’s prosaic remark regarding expenditure to pay a deserved compliment to his sweet hostess.

Perhaps dear Dickens wrote to us from Queenstown. We have both a dim hope of this.

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