Diary of Natalie Crouter

July 11, 1942

In some ways I live in a world of my own with these notes that are an outlet, saving wear and tear on other people. Perhaps everyone should keep notes for a healthy mind.

Instead of church in the barrack room, I went to visit the shop. A list of the things that they have manufactured and that are important to our existence are: a solder holder made out of part of an electric-light fixture; the portable grinder and buffer are made from a windshield-drying motor from an automobile, the pistol grip on it is a piece of carabao horn; a charcoal burner has been constructed from the base of an old road roller, with an Army field safe for a door, a base of rocks and dirt; name plates for camp members and a copper soap dish beaten by hand were made from a whole fire extinguisher; numerous frying pans have come into being from cable reels and parts of old safes; watch crystals have been ground from window glass, old light bulbs, and celluloid—they took a ten-cent glass cutter and ground the wheel so as to cut the glass; the hinge for eyeglasses was made from trophy plates and the fire extinguisher; knives have been evolved from auto springs and old files; the ladle to stir rice was conjured from an old trench shovel, with its handle an old athletic javelin; a knife blade is from a ballbearing cup, the hilt a plate from a National Cash Register, the handle of leather disks from cartridge pouches, the end knob from a rifle cleaning rod.