SEPTEMBER 29, 1944, MY BIRTHDAY: PRISONER OF WAR

Sixty seven years of age, weight 155 lbs; Hungry, bent over, have no sickness; have not seen any member of family since April, have receipts for money I sent through relief committee so I believe they are well; Breakfast, half of mess pan of corn mush, spoon of coconut milk, piece of corn bread 2″ x 2″; NO DINNER; Supper at 4:00pm. one dipper boiled rice, one large spoon of thin gravy, one small spoon of dried fish, old and wormy. Lights out at 7pm.

Gas machine out of commission, now using a wood furnace behind shed, it’s harder work hauling the wood and keeping fire going; still have a small gas plate where I sometimes make tea or coffee for old friend Sydney Schwarzkopf and a few others who have it. I have some sugar left which I use very carefully and Crumrine and I have a few tins of meat and open one every Sunday, about 2 oz of meat for each.

The Japs sometimes give us part of a carabao, maybe 250 lbs for more than 4000 people. Somehow GILDAO, the cook, makes it up so we all get just a taste of meat in the gravy. The women on vegetable cleaning detail steal so much that have stopped peeling camotes.

We get several cart loads of camote vines a day from garden which with tulinum greens go in the water for noon soup, so called. Everyone who has a charcoal stove is gathering any kind of weed 

Any kind of pig weed variety plant is cooked, even leaves of trees; pigeons are trapped and are getting scarce; many have been sentenced to Camp jail for stealing food supplies (this is a camp affair, the Japs don’t interfere in this); The Japs have taken over the main food bodega and issue only from day to day; they issue some fresh fish but it is mostly so small, bony and stale that we cannot eat it; the little dried fish are more edible although very old; the Japs also have stopped all athletics, which is not such a bad thing as few are able to take part. They also forbid us to go in the front compound as they are now storing large quantities of loot supplies such as rubber, tin, machinery, air strip webbing and other stuff; we also must now bow correctly to every Jap we meet, no matter how low his rank; we must stay in quarters during air raid alerts even if no planes are in sight.

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