JULY 16, 1954
HYDE PARK, Thursday—I, for one, am very glad that our Asian policy in relation to that of our Western allies seems to be working out so that we are sending Under Secretary of State Walter Bedell Smith back to Geneva. I have long felt that this whole situation would have been improved if the Korean problem and the Indochina problem had been handled within the U.N., but if it is to be handled at Geneva, then I think we should be there.
Many of us have been interested in the President's health reinsurance bill for aiding the expansion of private and non-profit hospital and medical insurance plans. The American Medical Association seems to have been opposed to the plan, and both liberals and conservatives in Congress have not been completely happy about it. As far as I can understand it, however, had the bill gone through, it would have enabled insurance groups to handle cases which might be considered too much of a risk unless they could have some guarantee against abnormal losses.
I always believe in going forward one step even if you cannot go forward as far as you would like to go, and this, it seems to me, would have been one step forward. But perhaps, by the House's action of recommitting the bill to committee, we may get a very much better bill. That is what we must hope for.
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It was hot here at Hyde Park on Wednesday, but somehow, as we sat on the porch of my house eating our supper, the greenery all around us made the heat much more bearable. There were clouds in the sky which denoted a gathering storm. About 10:00 p.m. thunder and lightning and heavy rain began. And shortly, all the electric lights went out. Such are the joys of a country house!
My two little Scotties refused to move even a few inches away from us—their usual behavior in thunderstorms. In the dark my cousin, Mrs. Morgan, and I felt our way to the windows that had to be closed. And then, still groping in the dark, we found matches and lit the candles in the two largest candlesticks in the dining room. We carried these back to the desk so that I could finish my mail.
We then decided that we had better go to bed. And so, at this unusually early hour, with each of us carrying a candle, and with my little dogs clinging to my heels, we went to our rooms.
The dogs were much distressed because I was going to sleep on the porch. They felt much nearer to the storm out there than indoors. One of them finally conquered his fears and tucked himself under my bed, but the other one stayed just inside the door until the thunder and lightning were over. I finally went to sleep, hoping that I had not left too many lamps turned on.
Around 4:00 a.m. I woke to find the lamp on my porch blazing away, and so I got up and wandered over the house putting out lights everywhere. At 6:30 I got up again to open every door and window to let in the cool morning air. But I need not have worried so much, for the day turned out to be much cooler than the previous day.