MARCH 10, 1938
AMARILLO, Texas, Wednesday—What shall I tell you about Mother-In-Laws' Day in Amarillo? We drove in an open car along the line of the parade and the wind was sufficiently high to cause me to wonder how dishevelled we would be at the end of our 26 block drive. However, people along the sidewalk did not seem to notice it at all.
I was told that Amarillo has some 50,000 inhabitants, but at least 100,000 persons lined the streets today. It is not just a Texas celebration. New Mexico, Colorado, Oklahoma and even Kansas are represented here. Three of the governors, attired in cowboy costume, rode at the head of the parade.
After my drive I returned to the reviewing stand and was presented with a bouquet of red roses which had to be lifted by a derrick into place below the reviewing stand. It was a gorgeous sight and suited this country well, for out here everybody asks you how you like the wide open spaces. Things have a right to be bigger here than anywhere else and, strangely enough, large things do not look out of place, even when they are bouquets made up of 5000 roses. The floats in the parade were remarkable, colorful and picturesque.
The thing which impresses me most is the people. The girls have a great deal of beauty and the men are a fine upstanding lot.
Yesterday afternoon, I met a young homesteading couple at the government homestead at Ropesville. Then we drove around Tech College, where they have an interesting National Youth Administration project. Here the boys are finishing a dormitory. They put three hours work a day on it in return for several hours of instruction in different things in which they are interested.
A young man, who looked after us in the hotel, told us he had been going through college there ever since 1932. He worked a while and then he went to college until his money gave out and he had to work again. The hotel management is kind and lets these boys work on and off. The head of the College, Dr. Knapp, told me that practically none of his students finish without dropping out now and then for work periods. Our Eastern Universities might find this a little confusing, but I am not sure that it isn't a very good thing for the boys.
In any case, these people gave me a feeling that life might have its ups and downs, but out in this part of the country you expect to go up again very quickly after a defeat and you help Providence along by putting in a good day's work every day.
Before my lecture in Lubbock last night, somebody introduced me to an elderly lady and said she was a ranch woman from one of the big ranches. I learned she was nearly 80 years old, but I never saw anyone who gave me the feeling of more vitality and joy in living. She urged us to come and stay with her and chuckled when she told me she had copied a dress of mine which she had seen in a magazine.