Sun., Apr. 19, 1942

I am drunk today, as drunk as one can be and still be aware of the world about me. Beth and Clay need their faces washed and I don’t care. Sejio is already complaining at having to bring water so far for drinking and bathing, and anyway why do children’s dirty faces matter now?

Two men came from Central this morning and Nora asked the five other white women in for pre-lunch drinks to hear the news of the outside world. The news is that the Japs are ten minutes away, by plane, having occupied Iloilo airport, or one and a half hours away by boat. Our American friends in Cebu and in Iloilo have suffered the cruelest torture at hands of Japanese soldiers who are turned loose on small islands with no one to check their sadistic pleasures. White women are a prize. The army advises us that if a message comes to our camp from Japanese to come to headquarters to register to pay no attention to the summons—though there is threat of death if we do not come. A handful of women who answered the summons in Hong Kong and in our neighbor city, Cebu, were put in a brothel for use of Japanese soldiers. The U.S. Army advises white women not to be captured alive. There are two or three guns in camp for hunting. How we are to end our lives was not explained. We giddily took a second and a third drink.

I would kill Beth and Clay before destroying myself: These tiny bits of blond humanity who crave and expect constant sympathy and affection, whose every scratch and “tumble down” calls for immediate attention, they could not be left to cry to unresponsive ears nor to hold out their tiny arms to a scornful rebuff. So, because it’s our first Sunday in camp and the war has closed in around us, we drank too much in our tiny mountain hideout. We are aware that a white woman cannot hide in a brown population, that any one of hundreds of Filipinos would bring Japanese soldiers here for as little as 10 cents.

Some unpacked toys came today by cargodore. Eugene Field’s touching poem “Little Boy Blue” ran through my head as I put Clay’s toy dog and soldier side by side on the newly constructed shelf: More suitcases of clothes arrived also.

Took children to river for all to have baths since writing first part of today’s notes. Stream clear and swift, had difficulty holding Clay and the soap. Sejio helped, gave Clay a good scrubbing and brought him back to the house over stony pathway.

Saw three monkeys, one very large, two smaller ones, playing in the trees near the houses. So now we are afraid monkeys will come in our windowless, doorless houses tonight. This fear of monkeys at least diverted our minds from fear of torture by the Japs and so ended a most unhappy day.

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