MARCH 5, 1936
I had my first ride this morning in weeks and it certainly was a grand feeling to be out in the air and to see the River entirely free from ice. The big blimp was out too, with a long trailer, advertising Goodyear Rubber, over our heads. I rather like its silver appearance in the sky, but I prefer it a good distance away. When it descends so closely that you think the motors will bring it down on top of you at any moment, I am not quite so fond of it.
There is a great deal of argument about the Washington airport, but I haven't been past it for a long while. This morning I saw one of the big planes in one corner faraway from the usual taking off place and for a moment I thought it was bogged in the mud, but it got started rather painfully again and I hope got off safely. I have no fear of flying, but I do think we should make our airports as safe as possible and as far as possible use only such planes as are under rigid inspection whether they are government owned or belong to private concerns or individuals.
The Baron de la Grange, a Frenchman and an old friend of ours, at dinner last night said he felt that aviation was going to mean as much to the future of the world as printing or any of the big discoveries, that have really changed civilization. I agree with him for great distances are shattered with every new aeroplane route. He spoke of the regular trip which is made down the coast of Africa and across to South America which leaves on schedule and arrives on schedule and which causes no excitement. When you remember with Clipper Ship, I will confess that I was surprised to notice a little item on an inside page of a paper a few days ago, saying that "The Clipper to the Philipines left today." Soon that trip will not be a matter of comment, and China will be nearer than Europe.
A large luncheon yesterday at which Mrs. Hull was my co-hostess across the table, and last night the dinner given annually by the Cabinet to the President.