MAY 7, 1951
GENEVA, Sunday—On Friday afternoon I had to leave for Paris with my son and daughter-in-law, since on Saturday I had to do a full day's work there on various radio interviews to be sent back to the United States.
We dined with M. and Mme. Monnet on Saturday night and lunched with my friends, Mr. and Mrs. James P. Hendrick, so we managed to have a very pleasant time in spite of the fact that we had to accomplish a great deal of work. The last time I was in Paris for the day I was fortunate enough to see the Place de la Concorde all lighted up at night, with all the fountains playing. This only happens on Saturdays and Sundays, so I looked forward to being at the Hotel Crillon Saturday evening and seeing this really lovely sight again.
I also drove along the Seine and stopped to take a long look at Notre Dame. It was late afternoon and the light on the beautiful old church was enchanting. I would have liked to visit my favorite Sainte Chapelle but I knew it was too late and we could not get in. The beautiful glass of the Sainte Chapelle makes it, I think, the most perfect jewel of all the small churches. Anyone who loves Paris in the springtime will feel as I do that the chestnut trees in bloom are an unforgettable sight.
A little American girl came up to me as I was leaving after a late session of the Human Rights Commission the other afternoon, and as she shook hands she said: "I am an American and I rather miss the United States over here."
I didn't hear just what she said and it wasn't repeated to me until she had gone on her way. But I wish I had taken it in sooner, for I can very well understand that even if she is having a good time over here, spring would make her homesick. The very beauty of the flowers and of Geneva itself—or even of Paris, for that matter—makes me long for the sight of the flowering dogwood trees at home at this season and the tulips and the lilies-of-the-valley which must be blooming in my own garden by now. I wonder if the lilacs are out as yet and if their fragrance scents all the walks around our cottage buildings. I saw the first lilacs for sale on the streets here the other day, but I actually haven't seen them blooming in the big hedges anywhere as yet.
I went to lunch with a friend the other day and was greeted by such a friendly little Scottie dog. He made me homesick for Fala and Tamas and I hope that they will not have completely forgotten us when we get home at the end of almost six weeks.
We have been fortunate in the weather. Everyone says it is a cold and late spring, but I expected from past experience to have a good deal of rain. On the whole, however, the showers have been few and far between and we have had absolutely no difficulty on any of our air trips thus far. I hope our luck holds until we are actually back in the United States.
I got back to Geneva on Sunday. My son and his wife have flown back to the United States. It has been a great joy to have them with us, but there are only two weeks more in which to work on the Covenant of Human Rights and any of the other items that must come up on our agenda, so I have a feeling it is as well that most of the radio and television work is now at an end. If we have to have night meetings I shall not object, though it is not a prospect that any of the members of the commission really enjoy, because it is hard to do good work and give full attention to speeches during three long sessions a day.