FEBRUARY 25, 1954
NEW YORK, Wednesday—The weather is fairly good here and there is a feeling of spring in the air but this is as it should be when one has spent four days in Florida where it is practically like summer.
On Sunday night in Sarasota I spoke for a meeting of the Kiwanis Club on the United Nations. Our newly formed American Association for the U.N. Chapter there cooperated and I hope acquired many new members as a result. They held the meeting at the Lido Casino and were a little worried that not enough people would come to fill the room, but they had to send for more chairs and I think some people stood through the whole meeting. It showed again that there are many people really interested in the U.N. and its work.
My uncle, David Gray, is a perfect host and a really remarkable person. He keeps telling us all that he is 84, which nobody would guess, and then insists on getting up to take us to the airport at seven o'clock in the morning! I find that on the whole his contemporaries have to be as keen as he is or he prefers young people, and that, I think, is why he stays young and why the older people around him seem to have the same tendencies.
Our temporary chairman for the AAUN Chapter is Dr. Martin. She told me she retired 20 years ago and is now 84 and she jumped off the platform as though she were still a young woman! Perhaps it is the Florida climate! In any case, watching people who make old age as enjoyable as does my uncle tempts me to think that it may be pleasant to live a few years more.
I have a letter from Morris L. Ernst about a project which I think many Americans will be interested in serving to accomplish. Mr. Ernst writes:
"Last year when I was in London, Dean Allen John invited me to discuss with him plans for the restoration of Westminster Abbey. The combined ravages of nine centuries of exposure and the bursting bombs of the London blitz have weakened and marred the structure and stone work of the Abbey and make its restoration imperative if it is to continue to stand as the great symbol of Anglo-American freedom. The Abbey belongs to no section or group. It belongs to everyone; especially to every member of the English-speaking world."
Many fine people have already agreed to sponsor this enterprise and the English-Speaking Union of the United States has agreed to accept contributions made either in dollars or in pounds sterling and of course, such contributions are tax deductible.
This is an appeal which I think anyone who has ever been in London will want to answer, whether their contribution be large or small.