APRIL 21, 1953
NEW YORK, Monday—I find myself beset just at the moment by a number of details. When one goes through great changes in one's life, this is almost inevitable. I went up to Hyde Park on Wednesday afternoon with some of Miss Thompson's family and returned to New York for a few hours on Friday to keep some appointments. Then I went back to Hyde Park in the late afternoon with my son and returned again to New York on Saturday afternoon.
Each morning that I was in Hyde Park I walked in the woods with the dogs and saw a brave little windflower popping up here and there. And the daffodils are in bloom in spite of the fact that it rains nearly every day, not a warm, spring rain, but a cold autumn–like rain that makes one come in to an open fire with great relief. The green is coming everywhere, however, and suddenly, I suppose, instead of the cold we will have warmth and sunshine.
Saturday evening I had my granddaughter, Chandler Roosevelt, and her mother and stepfather in for dinner, and since the mail is so heavy I was glad they went off to the theatre and I could work all evening.
On Sunday, my grandson, Curtis Roosevelt, came over at lunchtime to celebrate his birthday with me, and at midnight I took the plane for Los Angeles.
This will be a very short trip and filled with engagements every minute. I shall try to see many of my co-workers in the American Association for the United Nations in Los Angeles and San Francisco and I am making several talks for Israel Bonds. In between times I must wedge in as much time with my families living in Los Angeles and Pasadena as I can possibly manage.
When there is a rumor that I am going to be somewhere, I begin to get from every side the most appealing letters to come to one more group and speak. I really am sorry I cannot accept the invitation of one of our college groups in the AAUN—at UCLA—for they tell me how really worried and grieved they are over the situation in their Los Angeles schools and they seem to need some encouragement very much.
I have a letter from Merwin K. Hart whose organization, the National Economic Council in its "Facts Forum," gives much information dealing with the U.N. He tells me that he considers the only value the U.N. might have is that it could be a forum for debate but I gather outside of that he thinks little or nothing of the work that is carried on. So he would find UNESCO useless in assisting any schools to attain better teaching for peaceful world relations.
Mr. Hart reminds me in this letter somewhat of a gentleman I heard of in Chicago a short time ago who had listened to a speech on the U.N. and announced at the end that we had been a successful republic and grown to be a great country in the past 170-odd years and he felt we could go on alone quite successfully for another 170 years, so there was no use whatever for the U.N. I am sure this is the feeling of a number of the people Mr. Hart represents, but I sincerely believe and pray that they are not the majority of people in the U.S.