JULY 15, 1955
HYDE PARK—On Wednesday morning I drove myself over to New Paltz to attend the workshop for retired teachers, held under the auspices of the Teachers' College of the State University of New York.
The workshop runs from July 10 through July 22, and is designed to attract teachers who have retired and to give them a new stimulus and urge them to remain leaders in their communities and as active as they can so long as they are able.
We had a well-planned program Wednesday morning, and the session, at which Dr. Manuel Rodstein and I spoke, was attended not only by the members of the institute but by a great many younger people who must be staying at the college for a part of the summer at least.
Dr. Rodstein and I spoke for about an hour and then another hour was given up to questions, with a 10-minute intermission for reflection, which the chairman said would make the question period more fruitful. Our subject was, "Staying Young and Healthy," and I thought Dr. Rodstein contributed much more really valuable advice, as a doctor, than I could possibly provide.
My main trouble is that I can't remember that I really am old, and therefore find myself doing things that should be left to younger people. Some few things I have learned, however, and they are: to move a little more slowly, to walk up stairs less quickly, and to so discipline myself that I will not feel hurried even when my schedule looks somewhat crowded.
The discussion turned to whether the position of older people throughout the world was changing, and, if so, what were the reasons?
Interestingly enough, Mr. Sundaram, cultural attache of the Indian Embassy, had brought this subject up at a picnic interview we had here at Hyde Park Tuesday evening during the session of the Summer Institute for Social Progress. He said that respect for age was taught every Indian child, but he felt at the moment, it was not always successfully learned, even in India. This created consternation among some parents, he declared, but because life is lived at a slower pace in almost every Asiatic country, remedial practices may not be too difficult to apply.
In America, however, where space for the young family seems to be at a premium, especially in our metropolitan areas, it is much harder for the older person to find his niche because everyone is in such a hurry.
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I received a press release yesterday which stressed the fact that the press conference was opened with prayer! That seemed so unusual and so significant to the writer that it was put in the opening paragraph of the release! But I see no real reason why press conferences should not always be opened with prayer, if those attending so desire.
At any rate, this conference was called to announce that the S.S. Aquarama is to be at the Navy pier in Chicago and open to visitors during the summer. The Aquarama is the first ocean-sized passenger vessel ever built to sail on the Great Lakes, and Captain William O. Gallery, USN (Ret.) will be in charge of showing off this ship which is designed to awaken the Midwest to the realization of the fact that ships of this size will be sailing on the Great Lakes once the St. Lawrence Seaway has been opened.