Eating the rich

Up, and by coach to my Lord Sandwich, to his new house, a fine house, but deadly dear, in Lincoln’s Inne Fields, where I found and spoke a little to him. He is high and strange still, but did ask me how my wife did, and at parting remembered him to his cozen, which I thought was pretty well, being willing to flatter myself that in time he will be well again.
Thence home straight and busy all the forenoon, and at noon with Mr. Bland to Mr. Povy’s, but he being at dinner and full of company we retreated and went into Fleet Street to a friend of his, and after a long stay, he telling me the long and most perplexed story of Coronell and Bushell’s business of sugars, wherein Parke and Green and Mr. Bland and 40 more have been so concerned about the King of Portugal’s duties, wherein every party has laboured to cheat another, a most pleasant and profitable story to hear, and in the close made me understand Mr. Maes’ business better than I did before. By and by dinner came, and after dinner and good discourse that and such as I was willing for improvement sake to hear, I went away too to White Hall to a Committee of Tangier, where I took occasion to demand of Creed whether he had received my letter, and he told me yes, and that he would answer it, which makes me much wonder what he means to do with me, but I will be even with him before I have done, let him make as light of it as he will.
Thence to the Temple, where my cozen Roger Pepys did show me a letter my Father wrote to him last Terme to shew me, proposing such things about Sturtlow and a portion for Pall, and I know not what, that vexes me to see him plotting how to put me to trouble and charge, and not thinking to pay our debts and legacys, but I will write him a letter will persuade him to be wiser.
So home, and finding my wife abroad (after her coming home from being with my aunt Wight to-day to buy Lent provisions) gone with Will to my brother’s, I followed them by coach, but found them not, for they were newly gone home from thence, which troubled me. I to Sir Robert Bernard’s chamber, and there did surrender my reversion in Brampton lands to the use of my will, which I was glad to have done, my will being now good in all parts. Thence homewards, calling a little at the Coffee– house, where a little merry discourse, and so home, where I found my wife, who says she went to her father’s to be satisfied about her brother, who I found at my house with her. He is going this next tide with his wife into Holland to seek his fortune. He had taken his leave of us this morning. I did give my wife 10s. to give him, and a coat that I had by me, a close-bodied light-coloured cloth coat, with a gold edgeing in each seam, that was the lace of my wife’s best pettycoat that she had when I married her. I staid not there, but to my office, where Stanes the glazier was with me till to at night making up his contract, and, poor man, I made him almost mad through a mistake of mine, but did afterwards reconcile all, for I would not have the man that labours to serve the King so cheap above others suffer too much.
He gone I did a little business more, and so home to supper and to bed, being now pretty well again, the weather being warm. My pain do leave me without coming to any great excesse, but my cold that I had got I suppose was not very great, it being only the leaving of my wastecoat unbuttoned one morning.

high and strange we eat
the most perplexed sugars

such as white light or road provisions
a new version of coffee

or this gold edge of the ice
where others suffer


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Wednesday 10 February 1663/64.

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