NOVEMBER 27, 1950
HYDE PARK, Sunday—After a very pleasant Thanksgiving dinner at home in Hyde Park on Thursday night, I had to leave on Friday morning at 6:45 to be at my delegation meeting at the United States mission office in New York City at 9:15. I thought I had allowed plenty of time and at first the roads were practically deserted, but when we reached the last toll gate on the parkway the cars suddenly appeared from nowhere. We moved haltingly down the West Side, while I sat on the edge of my seat wondering if I was going to be late. We came off the parkway at 57th Street at 9 o'clock and I dashed into the building at 9:15, making the conference room before the doors were closed.
Somehow, opening those doors when the business has started and coming in with everyone sitting around the table, always seems to me a terrible thing to have to do. I was grateful to have made it just on time, though I still had my coat and hat on, instead of leaving them in my office before I went upstairs.
We were out at Lake Success all day and are now working on the plans for the future organization which is to follow the close of the International Refugee Organization. We hope that a high commissioner will be appointed who will be able to help such refugees as remain in Europe—not with material aid, but with advice, counsel and protection granted them by the U.N., since they have no country of their own to turn to and therefore would have no legal rights. In many countries this would mean that they would lack permission to travel and to work, and even marriage would be made difficult. Few of us who take citizenship in a country for granted can realize what it means to be without the rights and protection which citizenship affords.
Friday evening Mr. and Mrs. Albert Lasker gave a party for some of the members of Committee Three and kindly included me as co-hostess, an honor which I scarcely deserved since I did nothing but attend during a most delightful evening. The orchestra was wonderful and everybody sang and danced. When finally Celeste Holm arrived after her own theatre performance was over, everyone was just in the mood to enjoy her, and she had a most appreciative audience who kept begging her to sing just once more.
I was surprised to find that I could wake up early enough to catch an early train to Hyde Park on Saturday. All day here the big storm raged. Three of our luncheon guests came by car in time for a visit to the library, but two others did not arrive until very late, since their train was held up by floods. They went over to the library so late that I fear they were able to see very little.
Branches are down here everywhere. People have been able to call us on the telephone, but we were unable to call anyone all day yesterday. We are now waiting anxiously to see if all this rain will mean floods in our cellars.