May 24, 1942
This is certainly a contrast to any May 24th I’ve ever had before. I spent most of the morning cleaning up the sergeants’ mess and my respect for sergeants, never very great, is now zero for the place was like a pig pen after a rowdy dance they had the night before.
This work was part of my duty watch. Every night this week has meant roll call at six, picking up paper around the grounds or some such work for an hour or so and reporting back for roll call at 10:00. I usually spent the interim time drinking beer. One night I went to a math class chiefly to get out of duty watch and brushed up in some trigonometry I’ve forgotten in the last ten years.
On Friday 15 I got a late pass. I was on my way over to the orderly room with some sort of story in my mind (which I now realise wouldn’t have cut much ice) when I meant the medical officer. He went to bat for me and did all the talking. I don’t know what he said but I walked out with a 1:30 pass. Then I looked for my flight to report back for more drill. The flight must have been having a smoke in some secluded place for I never found it so I took the rest of the afternoon off. The late pass was just for a get together at the fraternity house.
The following morning was another tiring inspection by the C. O. followed by a route march. The afternoon was another sports day and this time I selected football. There were so many people playing it was easy to wander off at any time for a rest.
Sunday is now more of a day of rest and at the instigation of the padre church is no longer compulsory. However I found too late that for this to be operative you must be off the depot by 8:30.
After lunch on Sunday (17) four of us went riding. The horses weren’t very good but it was a very pleasant change and surprisingly cheap (75¢ for two hours).
Twice a week our squadron raises the ensign. This means getting up a little earlier, dressing in blues (instead of fatigue pants) and a route march afterwards. Other mornings are spent in drill with the usual P. T. just before lunch.
Wireless classes have been cut out in the afternoon but you can go three times a week at night if you so desire and aren’t on duty watch.
On Friday afternoon (22) are whole flight was paraded for haircuts. This was fine and we played pool while we waited. I have to have a haircut every week. After this parade we marched over to stores to draw our summer uniform. We are not allowed to wear them yet but can make a head start on the buttons. These uniforms hold their press for about half a day and no one is very pleased with them.
On Saturday we had our first rifle drill and I guess we will be doing it all next week. Technically we should be thru our 21 days in the training wing next Saturday and move up to the disposal wing but you never can tell.
Last night about 220 men, tired of duty watch or CBed for other reasons, went over the fence. A lot of this was in broad daylight but the guards usually look the other way as they will be doing the same thing next week so the responsibility fell more on the special police. A greater attempt to catch them was made on their return and several were caught. Also a bed check about 12:30 caught more despite beds made up and padded with overcoats etc. We will probably hear more about the outcome tomorrow.
With love from
[Note: Transcription provided by collection donor.]