To Sarah Savage Thatcher

    New York City        27 December 1787

    “two oClock P.M.”

    Last evening, my dear Sally, I had the pleasure of recieving a Letter from Our friend [Jeremiah] Hill, in which he tells me that you & the family were well, at that time; And that you & Jenny were at his house, with Mr. [Silas] Lee, spending a social evening1

    I suppose my Letter2 reached you some time yesterday—which, had you recieved, or known the contents of, at the time Mr. Hill wrote to me, you would not have told friend Hill him, to scold at me for not writing home; However, my dear, as I told you, in the above letter, I had rather you should blame me for not writing than have been acquainted with my reason for not writing—

    And I still hope you heard nothing of my intention to take the small-pox, before the arrival of my Letter; which informed you of it,3 with my full recovery from the disorder—

    Are you not anxious, my dear, to know how I live here? I think you must be; for aside from the natural curiosity of females; every thing that can affect me, I am convinced, will equally be your concern—My situation here, in general, is as agreeable as I expected; and did not the Ideas of home, and the compleat domestic felicity I there enjoy, constantly intrude themselves upon my mind, I should be still more happy—for every thing conspires, in my present situation, that can make a lazy man happy—I occupy a chamber, as at Colledge, with a Bed & furnature—between seven & eight a servant makes me a fire—brings up wood for the day—and a Bowl of water to wash. At nine we have Breckfast—at eleven I walk to the City-Hall, get the papers of the day, make a Visit or two, &, about twelve, return to my Lodgings, and read till three, at which hour we dine—We rarely rise from dinner till after four, & often five—Then I retire again to my Chamber & study till nine, at which hour we sup—Supper, and the usual chat after it, consumes the time till ten—when I go to my apartment, & take my Book, or commit myself to sleep, for the night, as a disposition for one or the other prevails. Once or twice a week I recieve cards to dine out; but have not been able to accept of but one, till to day—This afternoon, at four oClock, I dine, with a large company, at Don Diego de Gardoqui’s, the Spanish Ambassador4—At three I must begin to rigg, for the occasion—

    Here, my dear Sally, there arises a matter of Curiosity in which I cannot gratify your wishes; tho I really wish to do it; for I know you want to enquire how I shall dress upon this occasion—Not being able to distinguish Colours, I cannot tell you what colour my Coat & Wa[i]stcoat are, otherwise than by saying they are of a light drab-Colour—made in the taste—Whether I shall put on white or black small cloaths is yet a matter I have not come to a determination upon in my own mind—

    The place I now live at is a most agreeable house;5 it is the most reputable & Genteel place in the city—consequently it must be as dear—It costs me seven dollars a week for my board; the blub [bulb?] of wine, (tho being unwell I have not been at this charge yet) and wood make it up nearly eleven dollars a week. I think I shall go from this place on Saturday coming; but I shall leave it with regreet, as it is so good an house; & the Lodgers here, who are chiefly members of Congress from the southern States, are Gentlemen of Sense and Information. The reasons of my removal are the expence, in part; but principally to be in the house with Mr. Otis, my colleague from Massachusetts.6

    Adieu, my Love, for the present—I will write you again before I send this off—The post sets off from this City on every Monday & Thursday morning—

    * * *

    ALS, TFP