Diary of Louise Fillmore Blancaflor

November 21, 1942

It has been quiet out this way for the last four days and we have not heard any news as to what is taking place.

Estrella and all her family (2 daughters, 3 sons, a sister (Pepay), an aunt (Tia Culasa), plus 2 servants) have joined us in our hilltop hideaway. There are now 18 of us in this 3-room nipa hut, including the few servants who have remained, and four dogs. One room has been partitioned off into a bedroom and is 19 ft x 10 ft wide. We have 3 “aparadors” (wardrobes) against the wall. Five of us sleep in this “room”. The boys (Jr. Millard and Roland) sleep on a big mattress on the floor, Dolly has a bed by me and I have my own box-spring bed so I am comfortable. I do not care how inconvenient it is during the day, just so I have my bed. The other part of the room we use for eating, and Rose also has her bed there. Estrella and her family of eight are packed in the next room. The servants sleep in the third room which is used also as a kitchen.

Dorothy and Meñing Bernas long ago had returned to the city to live under the Japanese rule. This is the story we heard from them later. When they arrived at their house, they found everything that we had left behind scattered all over the floor. Dr. Bernas said he noticed a very offensive odor when he opened the door. He looked around and found my red hat on the floor and it had been used for a toilet! Can you imagine such a thing!? The Japanese took some of our furniture that had been left there, such as our refrigerator, my new curtains, all my purses (for their geishas), shoes, a clock and numerous other articles.

I hope and pray that the house on the farm in Barotac is not burned. We have a lot of furniture stored there, also in Dorothy and Bernas’s house in Jaro. If those two houses are burned, we will be left without anything. I have a few of our belongings with us. I have my cedar chest with all my linens and silverware and some of my clothes.