' She described him as 'remarkably fit - flat stomach, toned arms - for a 45-year-old man.
After sliding into the pool, he floated up to me' The pool room had one mirrored wall, with the other three sides painted with floor-to-ceiling scenes of palm trees and sailboats.
After the interview, she added me to a line-up of children meeting the President that day.
I sat in a room with ‘the girls’, as the secretaries were called, and my job was to collect the streams of paper spitting out of the teletype machines, clip them into foot-long sections and hand them to the President’s press secretary, Pierre Salinger.
I’d met him only briefly, but he was asking me to come for a midday swim in the White House pool.
At the White House swimming pool, JFK asked Mimi (pictured): 'Mind if I join you?
It was part of his charm that he was a serious, sophisticated man with extraordinary responsibilities, yet willing to be completely silly.
Then he showed me some personal memorabilia: a pastel of Caroline, a terracotta bust of a young boy. ’ I didn’t know if it had been good, bad, or indifferent After he’d finished, he smiled at me and suggested I use the bathroom.To say that I lacked sophistication is an understatement: I was a skinny 5ft 9in former debutante — nicknamed Monkey at school — who wore no make-up and had a singular lack of success with men (total experience: one kiss in the eighth grade).This, then, was the girl sitting at her desk when she took a call from Dave Powers, the President’s special assistant.Our affair, which lasted until his death 18 months later, began in earnest the following week.All that summer, I’d swim with the President, race back to my desk, and then wait for a call to come upstairs.
When I came out, he was waiting for me in the West Sitting Hall, which was now deserted. He, on the other hand, was matter-of-fact, and acted as if what had just occurred was the most natural thing in the world.