Local knowledge

Sydney Walk
November 27th 1852

Good news from Blindingham. It appears that all is well and the staff are managing to look after Cook and contain her more excessive behaviour. I had not realised how worried I have been until I felt such a surge of relief at reading Mrs Cornbench’s note.

It is as well that there is nothing to concern me at home, for there is plenty to occupy me here in London. I have taken Dauncey out for a stroll or two – we make quite a pair as he pokes his pretty nose from my sleeve – and have begun to feel quite the Kensington lady. I am making plans for my contribution to the Press, I am organising a lunch party and am even beginning to help Josiah in his business. For the first time I feel as though my life is full of enterprise and sociability. I have Dauncey to thank for such fulfilment, I am sure. His need for my care is most gratifying.

The streets around Sydney Walk are alive with folk at all times of the day and night – it is quite different from Belgrave Square. I was not greeted so warmly there despite the fashionable nature of our address. In Kensington, Josiah and I have both noticed that we are observed more closely and approached more often than we had expected. People feel no shyness in speaking to us here, I am perfectly at home. I will perhaps feel emboldened when Dauncey and I are next abroad – he shall act as my Ambassador and I am sure it will be no time at all before I am a common regular around these streets!

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