Joh[n V]an Buren to MVB, 25 January 
I am still quite unwell with a bad cold – & feel very much disposed to attribute all my sickness to this air. Our vacation has expired & we have once more entered upon a term of fifteen weeks. I spent my time during the vacation, as you may well suppose, not very pleasantly. I had been too long running at large, to be confined with a good grace any where – especially in New Haven during a vacation. A very kind invitation from Mrs. Duer to spend my time with her, by no means contributed to my resignation. But, it was only two weeks & I was sick one week & it was very bad weather, the other. You can have no idea of the difference in expense between staying here & going home in the vacation. Here I have to pay my board, & at home if I want a coat or some such thing I can have it charged, but here it is all cash. I have to pay the tuition money for the whole year I was absent – according to a “by authority” law — also the rent of the room which I engaged when I left, for the succeeding term — ^all of^ which together with “ordinary repairs” and such other charges by which they impose upon the students amounts to $40. This together with my regular term bill makes $75 which I owe the Faculty of Yale College. So much for so much. I now & then take a look in the papers & can hardly believe my eyes when I read about the “eloquence of a Burgess”, the “Hercules”-ness of Mr Storrs &c. I see by the papers that Mr. Randolph has his “speaking breeches” on this session. I think I should be much more amused this winter at Washington than I was last. Do you see the Misses Cottringers occasionally? And Miss Carr, how is she? I have just received your letter containing the checks. My expenses last term were considerable. I had to get a great many things new. I did not Keep an account of the money – but I can assure you it was spent for absolute necessaries. My expenses this year will be $200 a term as near as I can calculate. I am practicing a rigid economy. You say that I have nothing to do with the expenses of other boys. It is only fro[m] them that you can see what
the ^my^ expenses ought to be. It is a fact that hardly one of my associates spend less than I do. They comprise one third, at least, of the class. After [p]aying $75 to the steward & a also a few [...] debts which I incurred during the vacation for board, [...] &c I shall be w[i]thout money & mea[n]s to stay so awhile.
Joh[n V]an Buren