MARCH 9, 1954
HYDE PARK, Monday—Friday afternoon I motored up to Hyde Park from New York. I went for supper with the girls who live in the cooperative house at Vassar College which was started three years ago. They do all their own work and therefore can live more cheaply than they could in any other dormitory. They told me that everything is worked out so that the girls work twice a year for two weeks in the kitchen and the same system pertains to all the other jobs.
After supper we went over to the meeting where I was to speak and they had a very good attendance which surprised me for I always feel that on Friday evening Vassar students are apt to go away or to have guests for the weekend. There were plenty of questions and after we broke up the meeting we went upstairs for refreshments and a whole roomful of girls gathered and started the questions all over again. At about 10 o'clock I decided that some of them probably had work to do over the weekend and in any case I had better start driving home, so we said good night.
I have not been in the country since the end of January. The snow is all gone but ice still clings along the edges of the brooks. The brooks are running full but as yet I can see few signs in the woods of spring—not even a skunk cabbage is poking its head up through the dead leaves. Right around the house on the protected side, I see some green shoots and I am worried about that because the nights are still so cold these early comers may get frozen. The air is wonderful and brisk and not too cold. I am glad that I can come back in another two weeks.
My two little black dogs had a wonderful time as we walked through the woods Saturday morning. They dashed off in every direction but they came back on call so I think there were no very fresh rabbit trails to be followed.
My son, John, has done a great deal of clearing through parts of the woods near the house this winter, and that will allow the trees that remain a much better opportunity for growth. This morning they were out sawing wood and building up the woodpile which is something I always like to see done as in spring and autumn an open fire is a joy, particularly when you do not want to use your oil furnace too much.
I see by the papers that Henry Cabot Lodge, United States representative at the U.N., had to answer the old accusation that the United Nations is a nest of Communist spies. He was talking to the Executives Club in Chicago and it would seem that those eminent gentlemen must know that there is nothing to spy on in the United Nations and therefore there could be no spies. That is the obvious reason why the Soviets never fill their quota. They have a right to a number of employees just as we or any other nation have, but their quota remains unfilled.