My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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I ran into my husband's office yesterday afternoon to say goodbye only to find my husband surrounded by the press in great numbers. All I could do was to wave a goodbye over men's heads. Looking hastily out at the snow falling fast and furious, my husband said, "Telephone if you land in a snowbank," and I gaily answered, "Yes, indeed I'll telephone right from the bank" and the men all roared. Ten minutes later Mrs. Morgenthau and I were on our way. The snow continued to fall, the wind came up, now and then the snow would be blown across the road making it hard to see. It was slippery driving. I congratulated myself that I had decided not to drive my own car; at least if we landed in a snowbank which did not seen entirely impossible, I would not be responsible. We were going slowly but our driver was excellent. Frederick lay behind us and I enquired if Mrs. Morgenthau felt as I did that Mrs. Hull's lunch made a very light and very late supper desirable and like the perfect companion she answered that she was not at all hungry. The chauffeur was in just as obliging a mood, feeling, I imagine, that life would be pleasanter when driving was over for the day! We went through to Harrisburg and stopped at the Penn-Harris hotel without a thought of what awaited us, but the minute I stepped into the lobby and saw the milling crowd of men my heart sank. I recognize conventions afar off and this was some kind of a convention. Would we get a room? Hesitatingly I asked at the desk only to be politely told that no hotel in the city had a room! At that moment a kind gentleman came up and offered me the Attorney General's rooms, as he was away. At the same moment the clerk came back and said a room with a double bed had just been given up and did I want it? I accepted it with alacrity and we went up with our bags, but before we could settle down our first kind friend was back with most of the hotel management behind him and in spite of protests we moved to the Attorney General's room which our friend evidently shared with him. Our first complication was a private wire but at last everything was arranged, the press and photographers were gone, and we were alone. We ate and went to bed each in our separate beds. The next thing I knew, I heard a sleepy voice saying, "No, he isn't here. Who am I? Oh, the Attorney General has given his room for the night to Mrs. Roosevelt. Where can he be reached? Through the hotel. What is the name of the hotel? Why, I think it's the PennYan." I gasped and said, "That's the name of a place in New York State!" The receiver was back in place, however, and whoever had called on that private line was cut off. We wondered if he ever found the Attorney General and just how important it was! We are now in Ithaca after a fine run over roads quite free from snow, through lovely country.

E.R.
TMsd 17 February 1937, AERP, FDRL