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Thirty below freezing! It was inconceivable till one stepped out into it at midnight, and the first shock of that clear, still air took away the breath as does a plunge into sea-water … there was nothing but snow under the moon—snow drifted to the level of the stone fences or curling over their tops in a lip of frosted silver; snow banked high on either side of the road, or lying heavy on the pines and the hemlocks in the woods, where the air seemed, by comparison, as warm as a conservatory. It was beautiful beyond expression…


This is from “In Sight of Monadnock” in “From Tideway to Tideway”, collected in Letters of Travel, (1892-1913).

It describes Kipling’s arrival in Brattleboro in southern Vermont, on his honeymoon in 1892, on a moonlight night in the depths of a New England Winter. He and Carrie had travelled by train from New York, and were taken up to her brother’s house on a horse-drawn sleigh, wrapped heavily in rugs.