My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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WASHINGTON, Sunday—Back in Washington early yesterday morning. It is some months since I have been here, and the beauty of the city even with a gray sky overhead strikes one forcibly.

I have travelled so much in this country now that the different cities have for me an individuality of their own, and I never come back to Washington without feeling that it is a fitting setting for the government buildings of this great nation, and a valuable symbol for the people who visit it to carry away as a mental picture. There is dignity, simplicity and beauty and a sense of solidity and permanance which is not a bad thing for us to have fixed in our souls.

Mrs. Hopkins' funeral was very touching and the church was filled with her friends. There was a profusion of flowers, the last gift that we can make to those we love. The simplicity of the service made it seem very personal and very sweet.

The rest of the day I worked catching up on mail, doing some writing that I had not been able to finish before, and after lunch Mrs. Helm, with her little wire basket, sat down beside my desk with a 1938 calendar and in a brief half hour the social season was planned. How short a time it takes to plan something which takes so much time in execution! My husband still has to approve the dates, but when that is done the program will be copied and given to the head usher, the housekeeper, the social bureau and my own secretary so that we may all cooperate in seeing that everything goes smoothly.

Saturday afternoon Mr. Basil Maine, an English author and musician and a friend of my husband's cousin, Mrs. Cyril Martineau, came to spend the weekend. At tea time, Mr. William Phillips, our Ambassador to Italy came in for a short time. It was a joy to hear news of Mrs. Phillips and the children.

I have a young girl again in the family this winter, and I think it is going to be a great joy. She is a little cousin of mine, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Forest Henderson, who is attending Miss Madeira's school. I was beginning to feel that I had no young people left, but this is going to make me feel much more natural for I like to have young life around the house.

Today is gray again and my husband is busy preparing a speech. There are guests for lunch and supper and this afternoon I hope to take my cousin to Fort Myer to ride.

Somehow one slips back into the normal White House life very quickly. I was glad to see all the kind, familiar faces when I came in yesterday and I felt I wanted to go around and shake everybody by the hand and tell them how nice it was to see them again. I only hope they were as glad to see me as I was to see them.

TMsd 10 October 1937, AERP, FDRL