The Jervis McEntee Diaries - October 1, 1880

Diary Entry:

Friday, October 1, 1880 I felt badly this morning and the morning being bright and cool and crisp I started out for a long walk. Went to Rondout, then down by the brick yards and up the hill above Steep Rocks thinking I would visit some of the places where I used to walk so often and where I used to find my pictures. I turned into the wood where dear Gertrude and I got ferns one fall not very long ago but it had been so cut and disfigured I did not recognise the place. A lonely sad feeling clung to me in spite of the lovely day and an overwhelming sense of life's sorrowful changes was uppermost in my heart. I crossed over the fields to the place back of the Alms House where I painted one of my best pictures owned by Mr. James of Baltimore but it too had changed. The pretty trees which were a prominent feature had been cut away and every thing was different. I came home through Ludlums woods and thought it very probable that I would never want to go there again. My head did not feel much better but I ate a light dinner and felt better during the afternoon. Wrote to Mr. Bachelder and tried to have a more hopeful and restful feeling and really began to have something of the cheerfulness that these autumn days used to bring to me. We sat in the parlor Sara my mother and I when about nine oclock Girards wife who with little Jimmy had been to New York on the Powell came in. Girard had not been at home all day. She was anxious suspecting he was at Dussels and she and Sara went down there where she found him in a condition that has utterly discouraged me. Maurice was there also. Sara went in and tried to have him come home and as usual received only insult and brutality from him. She asked Mr. Wood to go home to his wife and children but he informed her he would take care of himself. I regretted she did this but her earnestness and conscientiousness impelled her to do what is of no use except to wear and exhaust her. A feeling of despair comes over me and I pray the good God for strength to meet the trials which seem to thicken about us all.

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