OCTOBER 9, 1937
NEW YORK, Friday—Last night the President left for Washington, and it was really quite extraordinary to see how quietly the evening went off. The only person who seemed to be constantly on the jump was James. It being his duty to answer the telephone, he never seemed to be able to sit more than five minutes in one place.
Early this morning Mrs. Scheider and I came down with two friends by motor to New York. There was little traffic on the Parkways and there was a riot of color on the hill sides. The mountains of the west are more majestic, but I saw no coloring which was more beautiful than what we went through this morning.
Today we are spending in New York, and I leave by the midnight train to be in Washington early this morning. It is sad to go back with a feeling of loss. I wonder if one of the penalties of growing older is that you become more and more conscious that nothing in life is very permanent. Perhaps one should call it one of the compensations of growing older, for it forces you to project yourself beyond the moment and try to find some reason in the future for the happenings of the present.
The most important news in the papers today seems to be that a conference will really be held in an effort to bring about world peace. There seems to be a general agreement on objectives, though as usual everyone seems at odds about methods. I wonder if it strikes other people as it strikes me that this difference on methods which is always treated as a minor difficulty, is really the point on which nearly all conferences break up? One can only hope that enough nations can agree on a method which their respective law making bodies of the past and the present, will make it possible for them to put into action.
And so last night, "Oscar of the Waldorf," celebrated his Golden Wedding and many people joined in congratulating Mr. and Mrs. Oscar Tschirky who have been married fifty years. I wonder if any one occupying a position requiring as much tact and thoughtfulness as the one Mr. Oscar has occupied, has ever been so universally liked. Old and young, celebrities and every day people have been treated with kindness and consideration and in return have thought of this man with gratitude. It was a pleasure to be able to give some recognition to the qualities which he has shown and I was only sorry that I could not actually be at the party last night.
It was interesting to read today the figures published by one of our airlines on their month of September travel this year as compared with last year. They have gone up by nearly nine thousand passengers which shows that people are doing more travelling by air. I imagine, however, that the railroads too can show an increase. I often wonder if increased comfort makes many more people travel, or whether people today are more willing to spend money to see the world than they were in years gone by.