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MY DEAREST FRIEND.
I AM weary of this scene of dulness. We have done nothing and shall do nothing this session, which ought to be done, unless we should appropriate a sufficient sum of money for treating with the Algerines. We are afraid to go to war, though our inclinations and dispositions are strong enough to join the French re publicans. It is happy that our fears are a check to our resentments ; and our understandings are better than our hearts.
One day spent at home would afford me more in ward delight and comfort than a week or a winter in this place. We have frequent rumors and alarms about the yellow fever, but when they come to be traced to their sources, they have hitherto proved to be false. There is one at present in circulation which is not quite cleared up, and the weather is extremely warm, muggy, foggy, and unfavorable for the season. The river is open and, some say, is never frozen over after this time. Others say there have been instances in the last week in January.
Thomas visits me of evenings, and we converse concerning Hambden and Falkland, Charles and Oli ver, Essex and Rupert, of whose characters and con duct he reads every day in Lord Clarendon. I fear he makes too many visits in families where there are young ladies. Time is spent and nothing learned. Pardon me ! Disciple of Wolstoncraft ! I never relished conversations with ladies, excepting with one at a time, and alone rather than in company. I liked not to lose my time. I begin now to think all time lost that is not employed in farming ; innocent, heal thy, gay, elegant amusement ! Enchanting employ-ment ! how my imagination roves over my rocky mountains, and through my brushy meadows.
- John Adams
- Letters of John Adams, Addressed to His Wife. Edited by His Grandson, Charles Francis Adams, Volume II, 1841