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August 15, 1899

This is the winter season here, which accounts for the coolness which we all remarked. Not that it is not warm, but the heat is not unbearable and the early mornings, nights and evenings are cool. Cooking arrangements not yet straightened out. The water buffaloes, which they call caribous [carabao] here, have to be wet or they won’t work, you see their drivers pouring water over them from small bottles. Yesterday for the first time they were kept off the Escolta, the principal business street. It is outside the walls. It seems the place where our barracks are is called Malate. We have excellent shower baths which is a blessing. Most of the people, even of the poorer classes, are scrupulously clean. They do not wear much but it seems light and looks as if it had just been washed and pressed. They seem very slow about getting up our staff. It lies on the river bank, about three miles away, where it was unloaded and is not here yet. The Americans it seems have interfered with the use of broken-down, decrepit horses on the tram cars, which are now running with good though diminutive animals. Are not allowed away from quarters. Cummings, another Portland boy, who is in A Company, was down here last evening.