Carl E. Rice WW2 Memoirs: November 1st to November 25th, 1944

Nov 1, 1944 to Nov 25—I will pause in the battle reports and pick up a few incidental routine items:

November 14 received letter from Ada (my great-aunt and my grandfather’s sister) dated April 3, 44 soap, tooth powder, thanks a lot Charlie (my uncle, then about 18), wish I could send you something useful, but you will just have to wait (this little gift cost him 500 Mickey Mouse pesos).

I sure looked like a millionaire for a few days smoking those long cigars, of course I had to give half of them away and it was a pleasure to see how they were enjoyed.

Tobacco is about as serious a problem as food, in many cases is more serious. Smokers cannot get much real tobacco; use mostly dried papaya leaves; also leaves of various trees; dope these leave with any kind of spice they can get or lotion or onion or garlic leaves; hard on the throat but answers the purpose. Women  just as bad or worse than the men; have their five year old kids out early looking for cigaret butts the Japs have thrown out the windows; no doubt some of the collaborators do just to get some real tobacco from the Japs.

******I was in to see Mr. Duggleby about Cap. Geo. Caldwell, who is sort of a responsibility of Mr. F.G. Wilson, Chief Clerk of QM, and myself. Duggleby said he is much better and getting better food and treatment than would in here; he is in the Mandaloyan Psychopathic Ward. Caldwell was the third one of us left behind by Col. Frank Brezina to be in charge of office when Japs came. He stayed out under the name of Blanco, as Spanish, and was able to get some money for our families through Father Owens of San Beda College. But he became a little off balance so Father Owens finally was able to get him sent to the Hospital. Wilson and I first arranged with Father Owens to send him a little money every month by Mrs. Wilson, but it became too dangerous and money hard to get; Duggleby put him on camp relief and now he is getting well.

Many Old-timers dying every month, some of them friends of mine for many, many years.

Food is less and less, only get about four ounces of rice or corn a day, with pig weed soup some times.

Japs have moved all prisoners out of ground floor of Education Building and made the lobby into an office, other rooms for quarter and storage of their rations and loot. Some of the finest office and house furniture in Manila has been brought in. Imagine a dirty Jap sleeping on Beauty Rest mattress and Simmonds bed***

They also now have a kitchen below us and Negro cooks. Some of the pickled fish and radishes nearly gas us, but I would try to eat some of it if got a chance.

 

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