SEPTEMBER 14, 1940
HYDE PARK, Friday—I thought my arrival at Mrs. Morgenthau's tea party was extremely late yesterday afternoon, but I forgot the propensity Democratic parties have to last indefinitely! I arrived an hour and a half after the party was scheduled to begin, and one half hour before it was scheduled to end, to find that the Democratic candidate for Congress, Mr. Steeholm, was just swinging into his best oratory. The poor man had to stop to say a few polite things, which was hard on him and somewhat embarrassing to me, because I know how annoying it is to have a speech interrupted.
However, I had expected all the speeches would be over, and was glad to have an opportunity to hear one or two, and to meet several Democratic candidates. At the close, a band composed of young schoolchildren gave a drill which was really very well done.
Afterwards, we all talked and drank coffee and fruit punch. It was a very pleasant party. I brought Mrs. Morgenthau home with me, because we were having waffles for supper and I wanted more people to enjoy them. She contributed the first really ripe grapes which we have had from their new vineyard and we sat in front of the fire all evening and ate far more grapes than grown people should. Of course, I can remember as a little girl buying a whole basket from the farmers as they started to market, and eating them all before I reached home, but the days for such excesses are long past.
I forgot to tell you yesterday of the impression that Mr. Churchill's speech made on me. There was calmness and great fortitude in his voice and words. It seemed a challenge to every individual Briton, which made one feel that it would be impossible to do anything but endure to the end. He reviewed the crisis that they have gone through in the history of their nation, and spoke of Nelson's message to his sailors. His own speech was very similar and could be summed up in much the same words, "England expects every man to do his duty," and, for that matter, every woman and child might well be included.
I read a letter last night from a little boy in a refugee camp in England and he passed off the fires and the bombs quite casually, saying that they were so frequent now that he really could not take the time to tell about them.
Mrs. Morgenthau and I drove to New York City early this morning and we are lunching with Mr. Morris Ernst and some of his friends.