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The Cuba Journal: 06/24/08
The fifth piece in Havana is a letter from Sophia Peabody (soon to be Hawthorne) to her parents while she was in Cuba for her health. Her letter is among my favorites so far because of my fondness for her husband's books. Sophia by the way was the inspiration for House of the Seven Gables; (1851) I highly recommend it if you haven't read it.
In her letter (the third written during her trip), Sophia describes the voyage and the fun she had borrowing the captain's glass to watch the "distant ships and land when ever they were in sight." She goes on to describe where she is staying including the unusual architecture of the home and the day to day sounds she can hear from her window. As she was racing to beat the last call for mail, her long letter is peppered with odd word choices and other mistakes but that is nature of letter writing. Her words convey her enthusiasm and sense of adventure all these many years later.