MVB to [Judith] Rives, 9 January 1829
Jany 9th 1829
My dear friend
I thank you a thousand times for your kind remembrance of me & am ashamed of myself for not having sooner acknowledged it. But if you could have the slightest conception of the variety and multiplicity of my concerns you would I am sure ^pardon^ my seeming negligence. I assure you with great sincerity that I would greatly prefer to spend my winter with your agreeable mess to the hustle & trouble of my gubernatorial station; but the fates have decreed otherwise and we public men must submit to whatever our masters the people choose to make of us. I wish you took interest in any thing here that I might have something to write as a consideration for what I am about to ask of you, that is if you will pardon my presumption. I like to hear the gossip of the female world of Washington, & I should be ashamed if I did not, for those smaller concerns are among the real comforts of life. How am I to get it. My excellent friend & your envied mess-mate Cambreleng gives me an occasional hint, but he will soon be lost in Cash Duties, ware-housing System, & such like matters, in which he is so well calculated to shine; but of which I have heard enough. Will you so do me the favour to communicate in a brief epistle through Mr C. an occasional memoranda of the events of the day in the question to which I have referred. You would lay me under obligation & do no harm to any body or thing. Make my best respects to your worthy husband and say to him that next to yourself there is no person at Washington from whom it would give me more pleasure to hear occasionally. I shall send him the subscription paper for Mr Jeffersons works in a few days. Is Mrs. McLane with you. I shall put her in requisition also, but then she has so many children and such a fidgety husband.
Your sincere friend