My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

Text Size: Small Text Normal Text Large Text Larger Text

NEW YORK, Tuesday—Day by day here in New York City it is beginning to look more like Christmas. I caught sight of the workmen putting up the big Norway spruce tree in Rockefeller Center yesterday morning. Later I saw other men beginning to work on Park Avenue. I have always felt that one of the most beautiful Christmas rituals is to drive down Fifth Avenue to Washington Square and up Park Avenue after the trees are lit. It gives one more Christmas spirit than anything in the city.

* * *

In the United Nations yesterday the delegate from India finally got a chance to present his country's proposal for a truce in the Korean War, and the Political Action Committee voted in favor of it, 53 to 5.

In Committee 3 we finally came to a vote on the first resolution passed on to us from the Human Rights Commission, the subject of which is self-determination of peoples. This resolution, I am sorry to say, is rather badly drawn. I am not very sure that any country accepting it will accede to holding its elections under the auspices of the U.N. But, confusing as it is, it passed, and I am afraid it isn't going to have a very earth-shaking effect on anyone at present.

* * *

I saw a picture of Mrs. Truman welcoming Mrs. Eisenhower at the door of the White House, and I could not help recalling when I visited Mrs. Hoover. I certainly was not as well dressed as Mrs. Eisenhower was.

The White House today is in a great deal better condition than it was when my husband and I entered it. Also, there is much more room on the third floor. I see by the papers that Mrs. Eisenhower missed visiting the kitchen, and I always felt that that was one of the most important and interesting parts of the house. Perhaps Mrs. Eisenhower felt there would be plenty of time in the future for that.

* * *

It is rather appalling when one thinks of the tremendous sums of money that was spent getting a President elected this past autumn. I wish something could be done to make arrangements so that both parties could have equal opportunity on television and radio, equal space in the newspapers, and an equal allowance for travel. Then it would be fair all around. And if paid from government revenues everyone would pay their full share, which is entirely proper in a democracy.

* * *

In an Oregon newspaper, which was sent to me the other day, I read with pleasure of a woman, evidently over 50 years old, who decided to embark on a great adventure. She is Mrs. Janet Knowlton, a widow.

She decided she would spend her life savings in seeing the world. So, she started last July and went first to England and in November she reached Istanbul. She is not being a mere tourist, however. She has appointed herself a crusader, to carry goodwill and understanding of the people of the world and learn something about them.

She wants to see the people everywhere, how they live, what they eat and what they think of us. This idea came to her while she was projects chairman of the Division of International Relations of the Oregon Federation of Women's Clubs. She is traveling on her own, not sponsored by anyone, and I'm sure she will have a wonderful story to tell when she gets home.

My congratulations and best wishes go to her on her trip.