FEBRUARY 4, 1938
WASHINGTON, Thursday—Last night I went to see Ina Claire in "Once Is Enough." Sometimes we are fortunate enough to see plays in Washington before they are given in New York City. While the first few performances of any play are not as a rule the best, still I enjoyed every minute of the show. Last night, I thought the acting was excellent and the play most entertaining.
Today I lunched with Mrs. Bankhead, the wife of the Speaker of the House. I have rarely seen a more charmingly arranged horseshoe table. The flowers were very lovely and led me to inquire of my neighbor, the Japanese Ambasadoress, whether women in Japan were not taught how to arrange flowers as part of their preparation for married life. She told me flower arrangement was part of every woman's training, but they were far more economical in Japan because they used only a few flowers at a time. She added that she always felt a little sorry for the flowers because they had to be bent in so many directions to achieve the desired shapes.
I like a few flowers in a vase better than I do a great number and I like a combination of colors, for you can do much more daring things with flowers than with any other medium. One look at a field of wild flowers will show you what a variety of colors you can blend, if you do not crowd them too much.
We were all very much distressed this afternoon to hear of the accident to the Navy bombers in the Pacific war games. I suppose it is absolutely necessary to practice in order to acquire proper skill but it seems particularly sad when men die in training. We all know that whatever we do in life is hazardous and that we cannot always walk the path of safety, but such an accident is a great shock.
The State of Illinois is evidently going to have another seige of floods, for they report that the unseasonably warm weather and heavy rains may release an 80-mile stretch of thick ice on the Rock River running down into the Mississippi. I shall be thankful when we are embarked on a program which comprehensively deals with the floods at the source.
Of course, it is a combination program of reforestation, soil conservation and proper dams, and will take a long time to complete. When a complete study has been made and a program outlined, we can begin at our most vulnerable points. We can then work on all three fronts at once and year by year the relief necessitated by flood destruction will grow less.