NOVEMBER 5, 1940
HYDE PARK, Monday—Yesterday was a thoroughly peaceful country day. All of us walked as a group and then I rode alone. We were a fairly big party for lunch and in the evening some of us dined with my mother-in-law. As we came out after dinner, the stars seemed to me to shine particularly bright, almost as they do on a Western prairie. One star was particularly brilliant, and I wished again that I was more familiar with astronomy. When I put the light out on my sleeping porch, I found myself gazing through the bare branches of a tree at this particular star. It seemed to rest on the top branch and all the other smaller stars seemed to light up all the other branches, as though I had a beautifully lit Christmas tree all to my own to admire.
The next thing I knew was that I awoke to the soft pink-colored sky in the west, reflected from the sunrise. A beautiful autumn day is with us again to greet the President on his arrival this morning. We had hoped to see him here yesterday, but he telephoned that he felt he should return to Washington.
I have the last group of boys from the NYA project at Woodstock, coming over for a picnic lunch, and Secretary and Mrs. Morgenthau will join us. At 2:00 o'clock he will go with the President on the annual local campaign tour of Beacon, Newburgh, Kingston and Rhinebeck, which is always taken the day before election.
At the end of the Democratic broadcast tonight, the President is to be the closing speaker, so he thought he would give up his usual speech in Poughkeepsie. But 1500 people signed a petition asking him not to go back on his usual custom in his county, so he is going to speak at Market Street, outside the Nelson House at 9:30 this evening. I hope to attend that meeting with him.
This afternoon I expect to drive up to Tivoli, my old home, to see to one or two things which my aunt, Mrs. David Gray, has asked me to do. Even though she is as far away as Ireland, she worries a little about the old place. She knows the house is falling to pieces, as all houses have a way of doing when a family does not live in them, no matter how careful the caretaker may be. In this case, the caretakers are very vigilant, but the house really needs fundamental repairs.
I saw some little stories yesterday by Daphne Du Maurier, published in the interests of moral rearmament. It seems to me that they are very charming, but they indicate a change in the teachings of this group; or is it that all human teachings must conform to the necessities of circumstances? Only eternal verities stand unchanged in the face of all happenings.