My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

Text Size: Small Text Normal Text Large Text Larger Text

NEW YORK, Thursday—At 4:00 o'clock yesterday afternoon, while I sat under one of those modern instruments of torture, a hair-drying machine, word came to me that there was a snowstorm between Camden and Newark and that I would probably not be able to travel by plane and, if I did, would certainly be landed at Camden. What weather for April 6th and it still looks and feels like winter!

My hopes of going to the WPA play, "Prologue To Glory," began to fade. At 4:30, my brother telephoned to say that it was snowing hard in New York City. I called up my friend and told her to find someone else with whom to eat the dinner I had ordered and enjoy the play.

I stayed at my desk in Washington until it was time to leave for the 6:00 o'clock train. When I went into the diner, I found the gentleman who had secured my seats for the play, looking perfectly astonished to see me. I feel sure he wondered if I was in the habit of asking for seats for a play and then not using them.

There were a good many young boys and girls with us on the train and I was much interested in listening to their voices. One of them had a deep contralto which rang through the whole car when she spoke and it literally made you turn around.

Young faces are interesting, like a clean sheet of paper waiting for what may be written. One of these youngsters had an eager face, broad high brow, a generous mouth and a really lovely line from her chin to her ear. I will wager that in her life there will be no meaness or pettiness, though there might be much suffering, for I am sure she has the capacity to give and that often leads one into situations either of great joy or great sorrow.

My brother met me at the train and we had a few minutes together in my sitting room before he left for the midnight to Washington. Between us we certainly cover a lot of territory and I often wonder that we manage to meet as often as we do.

I breakfasted with two friends this morning and went up to see my mother-in-law and half sister-in-law, who is staying with her. Then, quite frivolously, I went shopping for spring and summer clothes.

You can have hats this spring apparently of any shape or kind that you desire, from a turned-up wide brimmed sailor, to a little three-cornered affair which looks as though it were about to fall off one ear. I learned long ago I could not be extreme in any direction. You must be very young or very beautiful to be really daring in the clothes you wear.

It is important to be enough in fashion, but you must keep to a style of your own if you are to get by inconspicuously enough to have people forget how you look. If you are very beautiful, you must make people remember your looks, accent them in any way you like, for the whole effect is pleasing to the eye. It is harder to dress a plain person, for their clothes must suit them well, be pleasing and yet they must just be a part of the landscape.

E.R.
TMs, AERP, FDRL