December 2, 1948
I was glad to find a letter form you when I reached Washington yesterday. IT was written Saturday, and was, I think, your second - you mention sending an earlier one here instead of to London, but it has not arrived. Your Sunday letter also came yesterday, at night. I'm sorry that your foot is still swollen. You must take care.
The flight from Paris to New York was uneventful. We left an emergency field near Paris at 6 PM, in a DC4 (without pressure cabin) - this was a special flight, mainly for Queen Elizabeth passengers who couldn't wait. We stopped in Shannon[?] for an hour, and had dinner, but not so good one as before. We flew the Atlantic mainly at 8000 feet, but went higher over an ice storm - so high that just the exertion of wrapping my blankets around me made me puff for a minute or two. We stayed at Gander for an hour, and reached New York at 9. Henry and Warren Weaver and Miss Kingdon were all out of town, so I went to see Wickman of the Commonwealth Fund. He took me to lunch a the University Club, and then I took the 330 train for Washington. On
reaching the Hay-Adams I took a bath, read a while, and went to sleep. This morning I spent at the ACS building, with Miss Benner, trying by telephone to straighten out a mess I have made of my March trip - I had agreed to speak before both the Delaware and the Southern Jersey sections, and they have both scheduled the talks - but I allowed only one day, because both men are in Wilmington, and I thought (not having paid attention to the names of the sections) that the two were the same!
I think my last letter to you was written Thursday - I stopped writing then, thinking, because no letter arrived from you, that air-mail over the ocean must be so slow as to suggest waiting 'till now to write again. Friday night I had dinner with the Bauers. They send their regards. Saturday I went to the Louvre. The Sorbonne ceremony, at 3 PM, was very impressive. Tiselins was given a degree, but was not there. Sir jack Drummond was there, and an old Swiss chemist, Bruner. Also a surgeon from Mexico, Chavez, and a doctor from Holland, Gorter, who is confined to his wheel chair. There was on other USAn, Professor John W. Clark, an economist form Columbia. He also was on of the 50 35 at Chicago in 1941. The dinner given by Sarrailh was very fancy - pate de fois gras,
[page 3, on same letterhead:]
truffles, and so on.
On Sunday I went out to have tea with Haissanskis. A nice Austrian was there, Lederer, a friend of Laszl's. I was so tired from Saturday that I didn't waken until 1
, and after tea I had dinner in the hotel and went to bed. On Monday I went to the Musse de l'Art Moderne and to the Salon del'Ecole Francaise, and then at 3 PM with Manguin to the Academie des Sciences, where I saw Julie, Joliot, deBrogle, and many others. Then at 5 I went to the instititute de Chimie pysique + gave a seminar talk, on Dicky's new work on specific absorbents, Kirkwoods apparatus, the oxygen meter, and sickle-cell hemoglobin. Then I dined with the Clarks [?] in the hotel*. On Tuesday I went shopping, packed, and left the hotel at 2 PM for the airport.
The last few days in Paris were vry uncomfortable ones. It was below freezing all day, with thick frost on the ground, and I had trouble getting my feet warm. The
*Mrs Clark said that she + "John" had been trying to decide who I was. They decided I was a continental author- an author because I looked like one, and Continental because of the practiced way that I ate snails.
fog-filled air was also full of coal smoke, which irritated my throat, causing me to cough a great deal- as did everyone else.
I had a wonderful experience Tuesday morning. As I walked along a llittle street on the Rive gauche I came upon a scene like an overdone movie set- with pedlors calling their wares, purchasing housewives bargaining with dealers before a backset of vegetables, fish, animal carcasses, yard-long stick-like loaves of bread, a man climbing up the outside of a tall building by way of a big rope with spaced knots, a horse drawing a cart with two 6-foot wheels, a man in a fire-wood cart loading up a basket on the back of another man, a litle girl putting down on the sidewalk a carrier of babies' bottles of milk, an old artist walking by via his smock and beret and carrying his canvas and work box, a woman wearing a new cane bottom sits an old chair.
It is 2 PM now. My ACS work starts tomorrow- I think I'll look up Louis Wright this afternoon.
Love from Paddy