SEPTEMBER 19, 1940
WASHINGTON, Wednesday—I spent all day yesterday in New York City. I planned to come to Washington in the early afternoon, but since my husband was away, I decided to take the midnight train down. The day was divided between such extremely feminine activities as having my hair washed, and seeing various gentlemen on a variety of subjects.
In the evening I went again to see Lynn Fontanne and Alfred Lunt in: "There Shall Be No Night," and took with me several people who had not seen it before. Seeing this play for a second time, still is for me an exceptional experience.
All the discussions and thoughts on the situation of the past few months, seem to be crystalized and clarified by the type of acting which makes you live with the characters of the play, and by the writing which springs from a depth of understanding and faith which must help us all. These are times to shake strong men's souls and those who can help us deserve our deepest gratitude.
I arrived in Washington this morning to find a most beautiful autumn day. It is a joy to be greeted by so many smiling faces. Even the White House itself is beginning to look more cheerful because the new white paint is making it shine, in spite of the places not yet touched which in comparison look extremely grimy.
I had an opportunity to talk over various household activities with Mrs. Nesbitt, the housekeeper, and with Mr. Crim, the head usher. Then Miss Charl Williams, of the National Education Association, came to see me. She had a charming silver tray made and on it has had reproduced a letter written to her by the President in commemoration of her many years of service in the Democratic Party. She was the first woman national vice chairman in our party. She also told me of a delightful and interesting visit she had paid in Nassau to the Duke and Duchess of Windsor.
Because of her interest in educational problems of the South, coming as she does from Tennessee, she thought of certain problems we might discover in connection with the countries where we acquire bases. Of course, they will not be our problems, for we only administer to our own naval bases. But we will naturally know much more about many problems in these islands, which may have some bearing on conditions in our own country.