MAY 1, 1939
HYDE PARK, Sunday—The President and I drove down to the dock at Poughkeepsie on Friday afternoon to greet the Norwegian Crown Prince and Princess and their suite. They had come up the Hudson River on the "Potomac" and I fear the weather was not pleasant enough for them really to enjoy what would ordinarily have been a very beautiful trip. As we drove back through the streets of Poughkeepsie with our royal visitors, everyone greeted them in a most friendly fashion. They are young and attractive and full of zest about all they see. The Crown Princess told me, however, that they had not even been given time to get over the feeling that they were still on a slightly rolling ship, before they began on a day so full that they couldn't even remember how many things they had done. I really think we are somewhat cruel to our visitors, we give them so much to do they have no time to enjoy any of it.
After tea on Friday, our guests had a short rest and I dashed over to Miss Thompson to finish some of the mail. Only a few neighbors came to dinner and after dinner the Vassar Girls Choir sang for us. Everyone enjoyed them, they looked so sweet and sang so well. Their leader, Mr. E. Harold Geer, is justified in being very proud of them.
People always say that the Hudson River is the Rhine of America. For that reason my two youngest boys, on their first trip to Europe, insisted that I take them up the Rhine. They were much disappointed, for, beautiful as the Rhine is, and interesting because of the old castles one sees from the river, it has, of course, very little resemblance to the Hudson River.
I have always wondered why we have to make comparisons. Why don't we content ourselves by saying that we enjoy this or that and realize the main reason for travel is to see something different, and enjoy it because it is different. When we drive through the Berkshire Hills, why should we insist on seeing a likeness to the Rocky Mountains?
After dinner Friday night, the President told the Crown Prince and Princess that spots along the Hudson were said to look like Norwegian Fjords, and both of them looked faintly amused. Never having been to Norway, I can only judge by pictures, but I know very few points on the river which look in the least like any of the pictures of Norway I have ever seen.
Our picnic on Saturday night went off very well. The Norwegian Folk Dance Society of New York, who had volunteered their services to entertain after lunch, were a great pleasure. Miss Gudrun Ekeland, Miss Wenche A. Bull and Mr. Reinald Matheson gave us some delightful singing.
A quiet dinner in the evening and this morning we are going by train to the New York World's Fair. I shall tell you about that tomorrow, for I am afraid I shall have no time the rest of this day to add to my column.