Lewis felt the first blue tendrils tugging at his knees. Following the unhappy logic of such states, the mood became its own cause. The evening after he left Wheeling, he too sharply reprimanded his corporal for having failed to secure bread in the town. When he sent the man back the six miles to get it, and the damned felow was late on his return, Lewis began to fear he had deserted out of pique. This provoked the usual self-reproaches about Lewis's limitations as a leader, his aloofness, etc. When the corporal did return, Lewis felt grateful to him, which grossly unmilitary sentiment provoked additional self-reproaches about his womanliness, his mercurial temperament, etc. etc.
Beyond a certain point, those etceteras would begin to breed like vermin. Lewis fought against it. He sent himself the task of describing an artificial Indian mound, a few miles downriver from Wheeling. But while at the site, he hadn't enough time to do more than begin his description, so he left the pages blank in his notebook. Then he never filled them. He did write scientifically about the contrary wind; he noted the incidence of goiter in a certain neighborhood; but those five empty pages were a nightly rebuke. A journal, it seemed, was a record of what Lewis didn't think, what Lewis didn't do. Then one morning, journalizing became another thing that Lewis didn't do.
Brian Hall, I Should Be Extremely Happy In Your Company.