My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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I managed to do a good deal of Christmas shopping yesterday after noon in spite of the fact that I had a call at the Democratic State Committee office from a young man who was so interesting about the particular subject on which he came to talk, that time slipped by unnoticed.

I wonder if people do certain kinds of work because they are fitted for that work, or whether the work brings out in people certain characteristics? This particular gentleman is I think about the age of my brother. They both do the same kind of work and as he was talking to me I could not help being amused at the similarity of approach which they both have to problems. Their work requires great versatility, the power to analyze a situation and decide what must be done, the ability to handle men and work out difficult situations, and both these men can do these things and all the time I was listening I was thinking to myself: "I understand you so much better because I know my brother so well."

I caught the five-fifty-two train for Beacon and the porter tried to put me in a very crowded car, the car behind it was fairly empty and I suggested going in there. With a hushed voice he said: "But it's the smoker". I still insisted that I wished to go in there. I do not happen to smoke myself, but I hardly see any reason for this differentiation in coaches on the train for most women today either smoke or are so accustomed to it in those around them that the slight difference in atmosphere will hardly be noticed!

A couple of young people came up to speak to me and were very nice. The girl telling me that she was a secretary to the Junior Democratic Club for her county and had worked very hard. I arrived in Beacon where my own car met me, to be met by Mrs. Ramsdell of Newburgh, and Mr. Holman, the President of the Associated Charities of Newburgh for which I was speaking, both in full evening dress, which was a considerable shock to as I had completely forgotten that it might be that kind of a meeting and was in my travelling clothes.

However, I have learned that under all circumstances the best thing to do is to try to forget one's clothes! The meeting was part of the celebration which was being held in honor of the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of a branch of the State Charities Aid, by my husband's aunt, Mrs. Annie Delano Hitch.

As I listened to the record of the work developed in Newburgh for the betterment of its people it seemed that I was listening to part of the life history of a very great woman who has given an example in her community of what we mean by living for others.

E.R.
TMsd 25 November 1936, AERP, FDRL