APRIL 6, 1942
HYDE PARK, Sunday—I had an unusual experience Friday. I lunched with Mrs. Kermit Roosevelt with no other objective in view than to meet a few friends. It seemed almost incredible that we were not gathered together to discuss some particular subject, instead of just enjoying each other's company.
Immediately after lunch, I went over to the Brooklyn Naval Hospital for a brief visit with our son, for he hopes to be out of the hospital by Sunday and to go to the country. The doctors want him to be in the sun for a little while, since country air and sunlight are good antidotes for any germs. Later, I caught the train for Hyde Park and spent a peaceful evening at the cottage.
Yesterday morning, we visited some of our neighbors. All families lead uncertain lives these days. They are constantly trying to adjust to new conditions. One of our neighbors depends on a gas station and a small lunch room with guest rooms above to make her living. In winter she weaves very beautiful homespun material, which she sells to established customers and passing motorists in summer. Less travel on the road, more difficulty in getting wool, may make both of her occupations more hazardous during the coming years.
Another neighbor, whose husband had retired from the Navy, had to see him return to active duty some six months ago. She heard from him the other day from the West Coast after a long cruise. Now she is preparing, if he should be there more than a few days at any time, to take the long trip with her daughter for a glimpse of her husband in between cruises. Fortunately, she has most of her family living on the West Coast, so a long visit will seem a pleasant reunion.
I have not been over yet to see one of our other neighbors, whose boy was on a destroyer last autumn. I am most anxious to get news of him. Another boy I am interested in, is the son of one of the other men, who works for the President. He is in the Army now and I want to have news of him as well.
I read a charming story last night about a little brother who tried to follow his big brother into the army. It reminded me of a little boy who came to see me here last autumn to talk over his brother's enlistment. He looked so worried that I felt quite sure that the first break in any large family was never easy for the younger boys to bear.
There is a little more sign of spring here this weekend, and there is certainly plenty of work to be done. Always in spring, it seems to me as though it was going to be impossible to get things really started. We are always a little bit late. Perhaps, if I lived here all the time, I could achieve a better schedule.