New York July 29 1826.
My dear Frances.
I am obliged to you for your letter notwithstanding there was some obscurity in certain passages. On the evening of your arrival at Great Barrington, you say that you walked up to Hopkins and back again. Now the greatness of this exploit you will please to observe depends entirely on the place where Hopkins was when you walked up to him--if for instance he was only the other side of the room it was a very little matter --if he was at his house it was fetching a considerable walk. 1
But leaving the solution of this knotty point until we have an opportunity to discuss it verbally I proceed to mention that I have been a little unwell since I wrote you last. 2 I was then somewhat out of order with what I thought a pretty hard cold--but the next day I had a head ache and fever and a strong desire to take medicine which I indulged, and in a day or two began to get better and am now nearly as well as usual. You may believe this when I tell you that yesterday I went to Communipaw and in the evening to the opera. Communipaw as you may perhaps know is the oldest settlement in these parts except New York. It lies southwest of Paulus Hook and consists of about half a dozen low stone Dutch houses ranged along the shore, the inmates of which talk Dutch yet. We went into one of the houses, a girl had just finished churning. She gave the party some buttermilk--a delicacy of which you know I am not particularly fond. We saw nothing else except a young negro about two years old in "mudder's nakedness," as the Irish say. As to the Opera I was pleased--more so than I expected to be. The piece was Don Giovanni, a well known plot borrowed from the Spanish I think by Molière, and since reproduced in a great many dramatic forms. 3 The hero, Don Giovanni Don Juan or Don John, marries all the wives he can