My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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NEW YORK, Sunday—So many inquiries are coming by telephone and letter as to Fala's health, about which Walter Winchell was so concerned last week, that I feel I must reply to the little dog's many friends.

As far as I can see, Fala is in perfectly good health. I don't know, of course, how Mr. Winchell came by his information. Mine is just casual observation. I have had to be away from Fala a good deal since the United Nations General Assembly started its work, but he has seemed well and happy on the Sundays which I have spent at home in Hyde Park.

Last week, after all of the items which had been covered in my committee had come up in the General Assembly, I was able to spend Wednesday and Thursday night in Hyde Park. My little dog was waiting at the door to greet me, wagging his whole body with pleasure at my return. He kept running from room to room to make quite sure I was really home. He seemed distressed not to find Miss Thompson in her rooms and would return to look for her at short intervals.

Thursday morning we took a long walk through the woods. Fala seemed keen as ever to run off after the squirrels and through the fallen leaves on the ground. All the afternoon he played vigorously with a large, white, long-haired Pyrenees dog belonging to my son, Elliott. This dog was a tiny puppy when we went to Campobello last summer. Now she is eight months old, a sweet and large and galumphing adolescent. To see the little black dog and the big white one chasing each other around the lawn was an amusing sight, and I was not at all surprised when at nine o'clock in the evening Fala was begging me to go to bed.

The ritual is well understood by both of us. He comes over to my chair, sits on his hind legs and bares his teeth in what is supposed to be a grin. He used to do this with my husband, but with me he is much more insistent. I suppose he recognizes the fact that my occupations are not important and therefore feels that his desires have a priority. At any rate, this is the signal for me to get up, take him for his walk and arrange his bed on my porch couch, where he snuggles among the pillows. If I don't get up, he will either lie down for a few minutes or else jump up on the sofa, something not usually allowed, and look at me rather defiantly.

If I still pay no attention, he may retire to the far corner of the room for a little while. But before long he is back and going through the whole routine again, until finally I give in. We go out, walk around and at last both go up to bed.

E. R.
TMs, AERP, FDRL