My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

Text Size: Small Text Normal Text Large Text Larger Text

WASHINGTON, Monday—Because I felt quite sure today would be a busy day, I went for a ride after lunch yesterday. On my return I found our son, John, had arrived with Mrs. Haven Clark and two of her daughters, Anne and Joan. Since Joan is about my grandaughter Sistie's age, I decided she would enjoy going to the Fort Myer pageant last night, given for the benefit of the Post Recreation and Relief Fund.

It was a wonderful performance with gorgeous costumes and lighting effects and a band that outdid itself. The horsemanship was, as usual, extraordinarily good and the horses were wonderfully well trained. They played a game of musical chairs on horseback. This apparently dates back to Tamerlane, who was the chief figure in this pageant. All I can say is that the children of today have no idea how exciting their game can be when played by wild horsemen!

Today was full to overflowing, but the first thing brought home to me was that the time for students to trek to Washington is upon us. I met a group from Briarcliff, New York. When I happened to wander over to the executive office to see my son, James, I stumbled into another one. They were a choral group which has come to give a couple of concerts, besides seeing what they can of the city in the interval.

It seemed queer to hold a press conference again this morning and see familiar faces instead of greeting total strangers, as I have been doing for the past month at press conferences.

At 12:30 I presented a trophy to Miss Jacqueline Cochran (Mrs. Floyd Odlum) for the most distinguished achievement of the year by an aviatrix. I was particularly happy to be able to do this, for I think there is a great future in aviation for women.

Two different groups met here during the afternoon. First a group of colored women under Mrs. Bethune had an opportunity to discuss their problems with the executives in the various departments in Washington who deal with the care of women and children, and particularly with colored groups. After them, the state administrators of Social Security met. I gathered a great deal of information from both meetings. I find that listening to discussions of this kind clarifies much that one sees and hears when one is travelling about the country.

Sometimes one feels that certain things should be taken for granted and that to come out and make a statement about them, or even to mention them, is emphasizing something so obvious that it seems ridiculous. But as I travel around and talk with different groups of people and individuals, it is borne in upon me that what is obvious to me may not be so to many other people and that it is often better to say the obvious thing than to leave people under a false impression. Information about all kinds of work being carried on by the Government may be an old story to us, but many people know nothing about it.

E.R.
TMs, AERP, FDRL