(484) Now first collected.
I had not time yesterday to say what I had to say about your coming hither. I should certainly be happy to see you and Lady Ailesbury at any time: but it would be unconscionable to expect it when you have scarce a whole day in a month to pass at your own house, and to look after your own works. Friends, I know, lay as great stress upon trifles as upon serious points; but as there never was a more sincere attachment than mine, so it is the most reasonable one too for I always think for you more than myself. Do whatever you have to do, and be assured, that is what I like best that you should do. The present hurry cannot last always. Your present object is to show how much more fit you are for your post(485) than any other man; by which you will do infinite service too, and will throw a great many private acts of good-nature and justice into the account. Do you think I would stand in the way of any of these things? and that I am not aware of them? Do you think about me? If it suits you at any moment, come. Except Sunday next, when I am engaged to dine abroad, I have nothing to do till the middle of October, when I shall go to Nuneham; and, going or coming, may possibly catch you at Park-place.
I am not quite credulous about your turning smoke into gold:(486) it is perhaps because I am ignorant. I like Mr. Mapleton extremely; and though I have lived so long, that I have little confidence, I think you could not have chosen one more likely to be faithful. I am sensible that my kind of distrust would prevent all great enterprises; and yet I cannot but fear, that unless one gives one’s self’ up entirely to the pursuit of a new object, this risk must be doubled. But I will say no more; for I do not even wish to dissuade you, as I am sure I understand nothing of the matter, and therefore mean no more than to keep your discretion awake.
The tempest of Monday night alarmed me too for the fleet: and as I have nothing to do but to care, I feel for individuals as well as for the public, and think of all those who may be lost, and of all those who may be made miserable by such loss. Indeed, I care most for individuals; for as to the public, it seems to be totally insensible to every thing! I know nothing worth repeating; and having now answered all your letter, shall bid you good night. Yours ever.
(485) Mr. Conway was now commander-in-chief.
(486) Alluding to the coke-ovens, for which Mr. Conway afterwards obtained a patent.