OCTOBER 30, 1953
NEW YORK, Thursday—I thought the ceremonies for UN Day on the Plaza of the United Nation were really impressive. They gave me a feeling of solemnity and hope. It seemed as though the U.N. had finally come into its own and that the people were really playing their role in saluting the organization. I was happy to present to Mrs. Pandit for the people a really lovely gavel which we all hope she will use and later keep to remind her of this year of service to the world.
A model of one of Columbus' ships was afterwards presented to the Secretary General symbolizing not only the ship of state of every nation but the ship of state of all nations.
An Italian journalist came to tea with me later and brought an interpreter so that he could ask many questions!
On Sunday I thoroughly enjoyed the peace and quiet of my little apartment while it rained outside. I tested both my fireplaces and found they draw well and it added to the cheerfulness of both my office and my living room when the fire was blazing on the hearth. My little dogs went out quite often to look at the garden and as the rain kept coming down they returned contentedly to sleep by the fire. Ordinarily they would have besieged me to take them for a walk, but Sunday they were as happy as I was to stay indoors.
Sunday evening I drove out to Montclair, N.J., for their U.N. celebration and was again pleased to find a completely filled hall and a very responsive audience. I had been warned that in the question period I might get some heckling, but I felt the questions were genuine questions and asked for information and not to be malicious. While we did not have as exciting a question period as we sometimes have, I thought the whole meeting was a very good one.
Mrs. Elvira Fradkin of Montclair is the state president of AAUN in N.J. and full of energy and plans for the year's work.
I was asked the other day if I had finished my Christmas shopping and I am ashamed to confess I have hardly given it a thought. Fortunately for me, however, a trip around the world means that one brings home a number of things and I am sure that what there is left to do I can do very quickly when I once get around to giving a day or so to this pleasant yearly task.
I love all holidays and wish there were more that one could celebrate. Thanksgiving is the next one of the year and I hope to collect a considerable number of the family as well as some friends to be with us at Hyde Park at that time.