In a small room in the Pediatrics Unit on the sixth floor of the hospital, First Lady Melania Trump sat in a wooden chair and looked at several children in the room.
One of them, a little girl with a high ponytail, was wearing a hospital smock with tigers on it. Another girl an older child in a Southampton T-shirt was sitting in a chair next to a walker. The room was decorated with a framed picture of a basketball, a fish aquarium and an IV drip in the corner.
"We will read some books today," said Trump. "So do you know what is today?" she said. The children looked at her blankly. "It's a reading day," she said. (It's also Dr. Seuss' birthday h/t to Olivier Knox.) She added: "So I came to encourage you to read - and to think about what you want to achieve in life."
She held up a hardback copy of "Oh, the Places You'll Go!" "This is one of my favourite books," she said. "This is one from my library." She showed the children a seal on a page inside of the book.
She was wearing black stilettos, a soft, blue sweater and a long black coat. She had a huge diamond ring on her left hand, and her long hair fell over her shoulders. When she got to a passage in the book about a "slump," she looked at the children and said, "So sometimes you don't feel good, right? But then what do you do?"
The children waited.
"You go places where you feel better," she told them. Holding up the book with one hand, she showed them pictures. She read: "You'll be as famous as famous can be," and continued: "With the whole wide world watching you win on TV." She smiled at them.
A moment later she read: "Remember that life's a great balancing act." After she finished, she looked at the children and said: "Do you like the book? I will leave it here." One girl held up her hand, and Trump gave her the book and said: "I encourage you all to read a lot to get educated."
Then she posed for pictures with several of the children. At 11:31 pool was led out of the room (photos available upon request).