MAY 19, 1937
WASHINGTON, Tuesday—Have you ever noticed how contagious is enthusiasm of any kind? A young man came in to talk to me at tea time yesterday afternoon about the educational program carried on in the CCC Camps. His interest was so vital in the stories of the boys and their opportunities for future employment; the contacts which have been made with employers; the study of the boys themselves over a period of six months, and the judgment shown in placing them in the proper environment, that it became equally interesting to us. I forgot that I was going to swim and when I finally got up and ushered my guests out, it was five minutes past seven!
The very same thing happened in the evening. A housing enthusiast who has taken the trouble to go to Europe and make some interesting pictures of housing conditions there, with which he contrasted some of our own conditions in this country, came to dinner in order to show his pictures afterwards. It was all to be very brief and cut and dried, but somehow or other his enthusiasm spread to the rest of us. Everybody became interested in the subject, and when the pictures were over, instead of a hasty retreat on my husband's part to the privacy of his study, we all sat around and talked until the gentleman really had said most of the things that he had in his heart to say.
People like this, who feel so instensely, are certainly the people who inspire action in others. Many of us go along quite calmly until somebody approaches us with the necessary spark to make us move!
I rode again this morning for the first time in some weeks, and was impressed with the preparations being made for the Boy Scouts Jamboree along the River. When they arrive, the bridle path will not be a good place to ride, but by that time I imagine most of the people who ride there now will have gone to other places where it is cooler!
I have just come back from the Red Cross where I was presented with one of my own books, "A Trip to Washington With Bobby and Betty," in braille. They showed me the processes by which they do their work and explained that they did such individual things as transcribing the German lessons for a blind student at Howard University. This student will keep these lessons very carefully and has already passed one oral test with the help which they have been able to give. When she is through with the entire course, the book will be sent to the Library of Congress and be available for other blind students.
Mr. and Mrs. F. P. Adams came down yesterday to spend a couple of days with us and we are enjoying their visit.