March 5, 1942

HQ, MIS, Bataan

Shared the guava jelly with her. We ate under a “cenniguela” tree. Told her story of the patrol activity and skirmish with Japs.

Two American soldiers visited a girl in the shack across the stream. We could hear them talking in broken Tagalog. She does not like Americans. “They think all girls are easy,” she said.

During my visit, Japs also visited from above. They dropped bombs near the HPD motor pool. She is a brave girl because she did not run for shelter. I felt like going inside the dug-out but I had to stay out myself. The American soldiers ran to the dug-out. I noticed one was limping and shell-shocked. Maybe he has had a bad experience. She laughed and said: “Look at him run.” She does not like Americans.

We sat on the grass till it was dark. She talked to me about her boy friend from San Beda who went to America to study engineering.

I told her I had no girl friend ever in my life. I lied.

She said she knew I was not telling the truth. “You are not the type not to have a girl friend,” she said.

When it was getting dark she laid on the grass because she said she wanted to stretch herself.

She was beautiful lying there on the grass with her short pants and her bare knees and feet. Her feet were well-formed, nicely arched and rosy around the heels.

I sat beside her and she asked me if I knew how to sing popular songs and I said I did not.

I told her to use my thigh as a pillow. “The blood will go to your head and you will be dizzy,” I explained.

She said thank you and she rested her head on my thigh. She looked nicer when she was closer to me and I could feel the warmth of her neck. My heart started to beat fast, I don’t know why.

She remarked: “I have met you only two times and yet I feel that I have me you a long time ago.”

I asked her if she did not mind the fact that the pants of my uniform were very dirty and covered with dust.

She said she did not and she offered to wash my clothes for me. “Just send them over or better bring them. Anyway I have nothing to do,” she stated.

I told her I would visit her again tomorrow as I was on leave for a week. Then she suddenly lifted her head and said: “Don’t tell me I’ve been resting my head on your wounded thigh.”

I said it was on the other side and that even if it was on the injury I would not mind.

She said that I did not mean what I was saying and she smiled.

I like the way she smiles. I also like her legs.


March 5, 1942 

Not much doing. Running again. Sent wire to Jean. Pretty quick after the last but better take every chance I get.

This afternoon, mechanics of the 21st succeeded in producing a hybrid P-40B/E out of Burns’ ship with parts from the wrecked P-40Es. Although recorded as a P-40B in subsequent operations reports, it was known as the “P-40 Something” among the Detachment personnel. 


March 4, 1942

HQ, MIS, Bataan

 

Back from patrol. Reconnoitered in Balanga. Met  several Jap patrols. Japs not there in force.

We were very careful. Kept away from beach. Balanga church was destroyed by our artillery. Did not enter church. There might have been Japs inside.

General refuses to believe there are no Japs in Balanga. I told him there are only Jap patrols, nothing more. He shook his head. Felt like telling him: “If you don’t believe me, why the hell don’t you go there yourself.”

Encountered a squad of Japs who were lying near a nipa shack when we were returning to our lines. It was late afternoon and we had not yet eaten the whole day and we were going to eat in the nipa shack.

Sgt. Sinculan noticed that they were aiming at us. We fired first. They had rifles only. We had a Browning automatic. We were better armed but they outnumbered us.

I emplaced my men behind a fallen log with a thick trunk. I could hear the officer shouting loudly and the soldiers were also shouting. We remained silent.

Suddenly, they all shouted and advanced. Told men not to fire until they passed the other fallen tree before the log where we were emplaced. When they climbed over it, Sgt. Sinculan opened up with the Browning. Two fell. The others kept firing. Meanwhile six crept to our flank. I noticed it and I moved three men to our left. Sgt. Sinculan said that we had better retreat because they were more than thirty and we were only ten. Besides one of our privates was being attacked by malaria, making our effectives only nine.

I told the men to retreat slowly to the cogon but I shouted loudly to mislead the Japs “Attack men!” and everybody shouted with me and we fired and retreated. Then I felt something warm pierce my thigh but I did not feel much pain. Sinculan and I were wounded.

When we retreated, the Japs left us alone. Thought I would be nervous face-t0-face with Japs but now I know one has no time to be nervous during combat.

Will write about this patrol work someday.

 

(later)

 

Major Javallera opined the Japs will probably put their main effort on the western sector. He also could not believe that there were hardly any Japs in Balanga. “Japs are probably up to something,” he opined.

“Are you sure of what you are reporting?” he asked again.

“We walked through the plaza and the school house and then near the broken bridge and we entered the town and there were no Japs in force, only occasional patrols,” I said emphatically.

He said “You can have a week’s rest, even if your wound is very small.” He gave me three cans of guava jelly, hooray. He is quite a good guy.

Will visit my Pampangueña friend. Fred and Leonie were not allowed to go out during last few days because there was too much work.

The general said I am careless that is why I was hit. He always scolds me, but I know he likes me inside.

All in all, he is also O.K.


March 4, 1942

Must remember to order the conversion of corn into corn-rice to substitute for rice to be given to the Bureau of Prisons.

Must look for dependable men to fill in the new positions to be created as per plan to expand the NARIC.

Worried, worried, worried. Domei reports a heavy raid on Bataan by 100 war planes. My blood is somewhere in those hills. Has it been spilled?

The purest blood is that shed for the country’s honor.


March 4, 1942 

USAFFE reports that we sank 32,000 tons of shipping on the 2nd, good toll for one plane we lost, even if USAFFE doesn’t admit it. Estimate 50 million dollars damage done.

MacArthur’s communique reported that the pilots had destroyed three vessels of 12,000, 10,000, and 8,000 tons, plus two motor launches, and did not mention any P-40 losses. Japanese records, however, indicated only a 385-ton converted sub-chaser as sunk. Burns was evidently not informed that in addition to his ship, three of the P-40Es were wrecked, two on landing at Mariveles and the third shot down, the pilot (Lt. Crellin) killed. Only Dyess’ “Kibosh” was now operational. 


March 3, 1942 

Had a party in evening for nurses from hospitals. Good time, food and liquor.

As a morale booster, General George had arranged the party, to which he invited nurses from Bataan Hospital No. 2. The pilots “whooped it up” at George’s thatched shack, fueled by the alcoholic concoction they had fixed. Cpl. Greenman pounded out boogie woogie on the old piano as they danced with the 12 nurses who had accepted the invitation. The party lasted until 3:00 a.m., when the inebriated pilots drove the girls back to their hospital, a round trip of only five miles but with the lights out of their vehicles, it took one hour. 


March 2, 1942 

Busy day. Radio control at Cabcabin, then about dark flew with Capt. Dyess. Straffed Grande Isl. Straffed tanker, Dyess blew it up. Wrecked plane landing at C.C. , lot of damage.

General George had received a report on the buildup of Japanese supply ships in Subic Bay, which suggested the Japanese would be trying a renewed landing on the west coast of Bataan. He ordered his pilots to take their remaining five P-40s at Bataan, Mariveles, and Cabcaben fields and attack the vessels. Round the clock strafing and bombing missions were mounted as from 1:00 p.m. As daylight was fading, Dyess and his weaver, John Burns, took off for the last attack at 6:40 p.m, Dyess in his P-40E “Kibosh” from Bataan Field and Burns in a P-40B from Cabcaben. After shooting up the dock area of Grande Island, Burns and Dyess strafed a large ship in Subic Bay and on the return flight Dyess in darkness spotted and strafed another vessel. Preparing to land at their Bataan fields, the twosome were fighting a heavy tail wind. Dyess made a rough landing, but Burns, tricked by the tail wind, came in too fast at Cabcaben and on each bounce his six .50s sprayed fire down the field. Continuing to roll past the far end of the field, Burns ran into stumps, swerved, and flipped over on one wing, tearing out the landing gear and damaging the wing and propeller. Unhurt but shaken, he slid down from the cockpit and asked, “Has anyone got a cigarette?” His armorer checked the cockpit and saw that Burns had forgotten to turn off his gun switches after the strafing attack and had inadvertently pressed the trigger switch on the stick on each bounce. His ship was the last survivor of the 31 P-40Bs received in the Philippines. 


March 1, 1942

Bataan, MIS, HQ

Col. Torralba said the general stated that my resignation is not accepted and that I’d better attend to his papers more diligently.

Raids morning and afternoon. One incendiary bomb dropped a few feet away from the doctor’s tent. Nobody injured.

Sergeant Buenaventura and Sergeant Sulao quarreled with each other. I thought they were good friends. I guess friendship ends where a can of Carnation begins.

The doctor wants to shoot Major Javallera. He claims the major spoke ill about him before Lts. Palo and Maceda.

The boys are rather gloomy. Tired of waiting for the convoy. I still have hopes but everybody’s nerves are jumpy.

Will go on patrol duty in front tomorrow. Will find out if there are Japs in Balanga. Conflicting reports.

Went to evacuee camp near Hospital II with Major Javallera. The major wanted to introduce me to two nice girls. Only one was there and she was very shapely. Made me feel like whistling. Surely a sight for sore eyes. She was wearing khaki shorts, woo, woo.

We sat in their nipa shack on the floor. She showed me some of her pictures. She is from Pampanga. Pampangueñas have nice skin.

We played an old record in an old phonograph. I think the name of the piece was “On the telephone” or “All alone”.

She had a nice accent when speaking Tagalog. I told her how to teaxh me to say “I think you are beautiful” in Pampango.

I also asked her to translate: “Will you please hold hands with a tired soldier.”

She asked me to button the back of her shirt. The Major saw me and he said jokingly “Mabilis ka naman”. I was embarrassed but she was more embarrassed. I tried to explain that she asked me to button the back of her shirt because she could not reach it. But the major insisted on joking. Then he said: “Never mind, enjoy yourself. Anyway tomorrow you are going to No Man’s Land.”

When she heard this she became nicer to me but I lost all my interest because I was worried about tomorrow’s assignment.

Fred and Leonie will visit her tomorrow.

Will talk to men that will go to front with me. I am happy that Sgt. Sinculan will go too because he is a sharp shooter.

Javallera told me not to worry because my mission is reconnaissance, not combat. I told him “Who’s worried anyway?”

Told Leonie and Fred that the Pampangueña is very beautiful, like Dorothy Lamour. They can’t wait for tomorrow. I said her shorts were very short. Fred started to yell. Leonie said: “Shut up, this is not the U.P. campus.” Fred got sore. “I’m the ranking officer around here.” We all kept quiet. He was angry.

Forgot to ask the Pampangueña her name.