[Manchester—Friday, 9 July 1875]

July 9th A heavy shower on the 5th cut off the fireworks which we enjoyed night before last with a radiant moon. We have been to town and engaged Mrs Webster to be our housekeeper—which promises well for future comfort. I shall send Mrs Pitt away tomorrow. Mrs Bowers and her daughter and Mr. & Mrs George Howe called here yesterday. Every pleasant day friends come to see our cottage which is certainly very pretty. Far more delightful than the ownership of a pretty cottage is it to me to get out into the wide free air and into the old haunts. My mind has been so possessed with things and with work of every perishable description, so occupied with the affairs of this world that I am estranged from my own country and feel like an outcast. But our Father is infinitely merciful and loving. Year by year I can return to the same scenes and after awhile find myself received into the arms of Nature, into my real house—and I pray it may soon be so now.

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