Dear Slade:

Many hearty thanks for your beautiful biography of an august friend! I know well what prompted you to write this lovely thing. I've loved trees, and I've hugged them when no one was looking. I know! Just this last fall I lost my lordly old elm in the backyard. It was a tragedy, and it would have hurt me deeply if I had not learned to let go of dear things and remember how good they were. I still have two fine oaks - very old.

Do you remember the lines in Jed Smith? - "- You've seen the still, enchanted way they grow".

There is an ancient oak in the north border of my farm, in the road right-of-way. They've gone around it thus far; but I fear some very important person will sooner or later find it necessary to cut the tree, and straighten the road!

No recent news from Fulbright. They sent me papers for a medical examination. I should pass. Evidently I'm over the scholastic hurdles. But at best I'll get only one round-trip fare ($1250). Do I go alone? Should I? I have no fear, of course; but I could be a burden to someone. I'd bet on my fitness, just the same.

Love to you and Nita. (So she too is retiring!)

John N.