My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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There is one thing that makes afternoon receptions entertaining. I had one today from four to five but it really makes very little difference what day it is, for it is the casual conversations that you have after you have shaken hands with everybody and you go into the dining room and walk around, which makes them really entertaining. Sometimes it is just some nice person who takes you by the hand and says: "Please tell the President how grateful we are for what he has done." Sometimes a lady catches my hand and says: "You really look nicer than your photographs," which is a little hard on the newspaper photographers but very pleasant for me! Or you come to a group and have a conversation somewhat like the following: "I think I should like to live for one year in the White House. You look as though you enjoyed it so much Mrs. Roosevelt." I respond that I find a great many things of interest and my lady answers "Well, you know Mrs. Coolidge was asked before she left how she liked it here, and she said it had been a lovely experience." I have lived here long enough to know that Mrs. Coolidge in all probability never made that remark, but if she did it was a "chef d'oeuvre" in the way of being non-committal.

A lady told me to-day that she had a photograph of my father taken years ago in Abingdon, Virginia, with a little girl whom I remember well. Miriam Trigg was her name, and when I was eight I felt as though I knew her and I was very envious because she could ride her pony with my father and I was in the north at school.

Then too, people remind me about letters they have written. Luckily I have a fairly good memory for letters and I am not often caught. Now and then I feel a little as I did about a letter which came to me when my husband was Governor of New York State and which began: "Dear Mrs. Roosevelt I am the farmer's wife who wrote you last year about the old age pension." The farmer's wife, poor dear, I had had several hundred farmers' wives write on the same subject!

TMsd 5 February 1936, AERP, FDRL