20th.—Here am I at Fremantle, after having spent the evening at the house of Mr. Leake, in company with Mr. and Mrs. McDermot, who have lately arrived; we had some airs sweetly played on the pianoforte by Mrs. McDermot, most of the music from Don Giovanni, which was a treat here. Dined yesterday with the Governor.
On looking over this, I found it an odd jumble de omnibus rebus, part of it being intended for my father, part for my sisters, and the rest for you. The vessel sails to-morrow for Java.*******
22nd.—No words can express my disappointment in not receiving the letter which you had sent by Mrs. McDermot. They who are in the midst of society, with the constant facilities of having letters and news from their friends, have no just notion of the mortification on the non-arrival of a letter from home. The receipt of a packet is a great and happy event; its arrival an epoch, anticipated with anxiety, hailed with excitement, and referred to, as a period from which one dates the lapse of time.
I shall now give you an outline of the occurrences during my absence from Hermitage, which I left on Friday last.
Mr. Mackey and Mr. Madden (midshipmen of H.M.S. Sulphur), drank tea and slept at my house on the night of that day, and breakfasted there next morning, and afterwards overtook me at Guildford, whence I accompanied them to Perth, where we arrived in sufficient time to dine comfortably at the mess-room. On the next day (Sunday) Captain Irwin read the morning service of the church in the hospital, and in the evening I went to the Rev. Mr. Wittenoom's church, and afterwards had the honour of dining with his Excellency the Governor, Mrs. Stirling, Captain Mangles, and some others.
Not being able to return to Fremantle on Monday, I spent a few hours agreeably at Mr. Leake's, where Mrs. McDermot again gratified us with some excellent music on the pianoforte, with a flute accompaniment.