Cu-Chi, Friday, May 30, ll:30 pm:
It was† really† hot† here today.† The promised monsoon rains haven't come yet, at least not very much of† them.† We had† about† ten drops early this evening but nothing to cool the place off.† I don't mind the rain as long as I'm† in my shop† nice† and† dry† and warm.† But outside in the pouring rain it can get downright miserable.† Oh well!
On my trip to Saigon the other day I was† surprised† at how† green† and† pretty everything was, even after the small amount of rain we eve had.† The rice paddies aren't full† yet but I guess that will come in time.
Otherwise,† things† here are the same old dull routine. I went down and cashed in† all† my† pennies† today† for† big bills† so I can send you some tomorrow.† I should be able to send $l60 or so, depending on how hot it is tomorrow.
The crickets are calling out the midnight hour† so† I'd best† let† my† eyelids† droop† and† call it quits.† I had to finish that book I was reading, "The† President's† Plane† is Missing",† which† was† alright but not as good as "7 Days in May".† I love you with everything I have.
p.s.†††††† I ran out of popcorn tonight.
Cu-Chi, Saturday, May 31, 10:00 pm:
You're getting to be so good at making† tapes,† I† just can't† believe it.† You are developing that Jacobsmeyer gift of gab that gallops in our† family.† I† really† enjoyed† the tape and I hope to get more soon if you get the chance.
It's† sprinkling† at† the moment and it started halfway through† the† flick,† "The† Impossible† Years",† with† David Niven.† Needless† to† say, I got wet but the movie was worth it; really a† good† laugh-in.† I† missed† "Barbarella"† last night but I plan to see it later.
Today† was† payday† as† you† know† and a real mad house around here.† To get paid we had to get our shot† record† up to† date, which meant getting a cholera and plague shot, and getting my† weapon† serial† number† checked† at† the† supply room.† I† finally† got† paid about 3:00pm this afternoon and rushed down to get some money orders for you.† I† even† took today's† tips† and sent to you so you can believe it's every cent I had.† If you NEED more let me† know,† otherwise† I'll spend the rest of my money here on junk.
I† got† a† thank† you† card† from Larry and Barbara for sending a wedding card, so† I† guess† they† didn't† get† the china† yet.† Speaking† of† china,† the catalogs haven't come yet so I can't send you one as yet.
I also got a letter from Fay and Norm in Utah that† was very† interesting.† It† seems† that Vic lost another VW when he got sandwiched between two other cars in the† canyon.† So he†† now† drives† a† Falcon† to† school.† Noray† was† chosen cheerleader of her class and is really good† on† the† uneven parallel bars and balance beam.
I'm† getting† anxious† to† come† home dear, it seems so close to reality now.† I'm† sure† sorry† to hear† that† the girls† are† causing† you† to be nervous.† I hope I can sooth your nerves (?) when I get home.† It must be rough to watch them both all day long.
Well,† I† love† you† dear and I hope the money will get you by till next month.† Oh, I just remembered† that† I† was going† to send you a run down of my expenses and earnings so far, by month.† So starting on the next page you'll† find† a quick run down of my wild spending habits.
March 15-31††††††††††††††††††††††† Tips = $l80.25
††††††††††††††††††††††† Salary =† $52l.04
††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Total = $70l.29
April l-30††††††††††††††††††††††† Tips = $347.25
Salary = $52l.04
†Total = $868.29
May 1-31††††††††††††††††††††††† Tips = $337.95
††††††††††††††††††††††† Salary† =† $52l.04
††††††††††††††††††††††† Total = $858.99
March 1-May 31††††††††††††††††††††††† Total =$2428.57
I† don't† know† how† much† tithing† you've† paid but my salary for January and February would be another $800 on† to this figure.
I† love you dear, just remember that because no one can take that from you.
Cu-Chi, Monday, June 2, l0:30 pm:
It's evening, late evening and† the† evening† has† been cleaned† and† cooled by a gentle rain which has now moved on and left only little puddles to carry† on† its† memory.† The night† is quiet except for the chirping of lonesome crickets calling into the night for someone to† love.† It's† peaceful here† this† evening,† a† seemingly† strange† thing for a war zone.† The peace of† the† weary† and† tired,† the† lost† and lonely,†† the† wounded† lying† in† the hard hospital† beds thinking of home and past glories.† The† peaceful† stillness is† so loud it's almost more than you can stand.† It's as if the world was waiting for some† terrible† thing† to happen, afraid† to† utter† a† sound for fear of being caught, hoping silently that whatever it is that has caused the† fear will pass† by† and† not† notice† the† silent giant hunched in the shadows.† It's a beautiful evening, late† evening,† so† cool and† still,† it brings a feeling of serenity and calm to the soul; it makes the worries of the day somehow vanish† as† if the† day was† always past and morning would only spoil the reality of everything.† It's nice in Vietnam in the† late evening,† a time to reflect and write my thoughts to the one I love that is so far away.
I just returned from the flick† at† MID† which† starred Dick† Van Dyke in "Fitzwilly".† A real good film about some good guy crooks.† We went over† to the MP's† lounge where they† had† a† live show with two girls that only knew how to belly dance the bump & grind.† It got old in a hurry† so we left† and went† to the movie,† besides, it was so hot and sticky in there it was worse than a sauna.
I thank you for the tape and garments and† I† now have enough† garments† to last me since I can't wear them while I cut hair - they'd be like† a pincushion† against† my† skin. I'll save them till I get sent to the field or home.
I† hope you had a fun time at Disneyland but I imagine it just wasn't the same being alone.† I'll† make† it† up† to you when I get home.† It's† late† and† I† love† you† so† I'll† close while my thoughts are sweet.
p.s.† Sorry about page† one† but† I† just wanted† to write something soft if I still could.
Cu-Chi, Wednesday, June 4, 8:45 pm:
I† must† be† sending† too† much money home because your letters are getting shorter† every† day.† I† guess †you† are pretty† busy with the kids and all, but I would like to hear more from you if you can find† time,† either† that† or† some more tapes.
I† was really tired today due to the fact that I stayed up late last night and didn't sleep† well.† I† was† awakened by† 8"† artillery landing near here and I got up to see what it was all about around 3:30 this morning.
I† was† going† to bed† early† tonight† but†† "Mission Impossible"† comes† on† at 9:00pm and that's a must, so I'll suffer tomorrow.† And† tomorrow †night† "The† Swimmer"† with Burt† Lancaster† is† on at the flick so I have to go to that too.
It was so hot today in the shop that I got dizzy but then† I† went† and played† that† new† tape you sent me and although it was still hot I was† more† relaxed,† in† fact† I almost† fell† asleep† cutting hair.† I† started† to write a letter about 5:00pm but I couldn't keep my† eyes† open† long enough† to† get past the date so I went in and laid down on my bed to await the next customer and when I† awoke† it was after† 6:00pm† and I was supposed to be closed, so I finally got up and went for my mail.
And† that† wraps† up† another† day† here†† in†† war torn Vietnam.† I† hope† you don't fall asleep reading it and tune in tomorrow for another episode.
Cu-Chi, Thursday, June 5, 7:00 pm:
Here I sit in my barber chair thinking† of† you† again. Tonight† is† my† night† to be open for an hour so I'll write you while the time flies.
Itís raining outside (off & on) and it's nice and† cool and† damp.† It† feels† like† a German summer evening shower. But here in Vietnam it's welcome† moisture† to† the† farmers who† are† late getting their rice planted due to the lack of rain.† It really poured last night just as† I† went† to† bed and† it† was† blowing from my unprotected side and splashing on me so I finally had to pull the sheet over† my† head† and go to sleep.
It was† cool all day today and sort of slow but I made as much money today as I did† yesterday† when† I† worked† my tail† off.† So† I† guess† I'll† just take the breaks as they come.
I just noticed that my roof leaks a† little,† too† bad, I've only got 91 days left so I'm not about to fix it.
I'm† sending† you a picture of the tape recorder I plan to buy plus some prices of others in case anyone else† wants one.† The† recorders† sell for about twice as much retail in the USA.
I hope you've remembered that† when† the† family† moves out† of† our house that we have to pay the last months rent. So set aside $l78 between now and then.† I† hope† that† 5.5% raise† comes† through† at† the firehouse.† That will be $92 /mo more than I earned when I got† activated,† not† bad!† We can† use† the† extra to pay the increased payment on our new house in a couple of years.† Either that or† we'll† take† an extended vacation to Europe and Russia in a year or two.
I† hope you buy yourself some more clothes before I get home because money might get scarce† for† a† while† after† I come† home.† We've† been† living† pretty fancy free the past few months.† I love you dear, more than† anything.† In† fact I'm† even† doing† exercises† late† at† night so you won't be ashamed of me.† See ya in 92 days (I hope!).
Cu-Chi, Friday, June 6, 3:45 pm:
It's† a† cool rainy, drizzly day and not too busy so I thought I'd write you a letter.† I hope you don't mind.
I received your letter that had the† backrub,† neck rub, and† etc.† rub last night so I put them to good use with the help of my new vibrator.† It felt† 5000† good.† I† can† just imagine† how† much† better it would have been if personally delivered.
I hope the weather† gets† better† tonight† because† I'm going† to† try† and† call† you on MARS.† If not tonight then tomorrow night.† I just want to hear† your wonderful† voice again.
Laugh-in† is† on TV next door.† The same one I tried to stay awake to watch Tuesday night.
I just found some more pictures lying around† so† I'll send† them† to† you, and I'm down to one roll of film if you happen to† stop† at† the† Kodak† booth.† And when you† do, where's the bikini picture?† I can't wait to see you in it.
Hi† again.† Just† finished† my† shower and exercises so I'm all† ready† to† jump† into† dreamland with† you.† I† am waiting† for† MARS to call me back with your call so I guess I'd better think of something to tell you before then.
Everyone around us got hit pretty good last night so think we might get it tonight sometime.
Pix† called about 6 o'clock to gossip.† He says to tell you that "he still loves you† and† that† his† love† life† is suffering† due† to† various† reasons† - mainly opportunity." He's going to Australia the end of this month and he† and† I are† going† to† Singapore† about† the† 20th of August.† He's still trying to get his early out but doesn't know† yet.† He said† that his unit might move here to Cu-chi soon so I hope so.
Well honey, my brain can't focus on anything† more† for now† except† I† wish† I† were† there† to give you a relaxer. (backrub!) Ha, Ha!
Cu-Chi, Saturday, June 7, l0:00 pm:
Another† Saturday† night without† you.† It's† becoming almost† a† regular† thing† around here. †But when you think about only 13 more Saturdays alone, it isn't so bad.
I sure enjoyed talking to you† this† morning.† I† could even† understand everything you said, just like downtown.† I thought you said that the Bronzeware had† arrived† -† if† so it's †a† new† record† for boats.† I mailed it on the 26th of May and the boat takes 17 days one way,† oh well!† I† hope you† liked† it.† I† can't wait to get your letter telling me about it.† I think I'll check on the crystal goblets when† I go† to Singapore with Pix.† I'll send you a china catalog as soon as they come so you can pick out another set.
I borrowed a Polaroid camera today and took a few† shots† of me† since† most† of† my pictures are of the landscape around here.† I'll send you a couple now† and† then† if† you† don't mind.
I† gather† from the picture of Jonette in the dresser that that is the green you painted it.† Not bad!
The action has picked up around here, at least† in† the 25th's† area.† We killed over 600 gooks† in the past two nights at a fire support base up near Tay Ninh city.
You wouldn't believe the size† of† the† cockroach† that just† attacked† me.† It was† at† least† 2-3"† long† and was hopping and flying around this little room trying to get† my naked body.† I† almost panicked but my "Black Flag" roach killer finally triumphed after† about† 50† squirts.† Wow,† I can't stand this place.
I† was† writing† in† the dark to avoid any more attacks and I couldn't see the lines.
Cu-Chi, Sunday, June 8, ll:00 pm:
I can't stand it!† Last† night† I† was† attacked by† a giant† cockroach (which someone says is really a locust) and tonight also.† I killed the one earlier this† evening† as† I was† working on† my† hootch† and put him in a box inside my carryall bag which I zipped up too.† And then I† could hear him kicking,† trying to get out but I hope he doesn't.† And then as I just returned from a shower and was† cooling off with† a† sexy† magazine† and† rolled† over to write you this letter, another one was sitting on and eating a hole in† the pillow† I† had† my† arm around.† Scared the pest out of me! But the roach killer† slowed him down† considerably.† His corpse is still sitting in the corner where he died.
Today was† Sunday† and I went to church this afternoon as usual and when I came home I went to the pool with† the guys† from the† 9th† Chem.† It was a different world there. Music† from† stereo† speakers† floating over† the†† grassy, park like† area† around† the sparkling pool.† I almost forgot where I was for a while until we had to leave.
I had to come back here anyway and get to work† on† my new† side entrance to my hootch.† It's right across from the bunker so it saves a† lot† of† time† in† getting† there.† (I hope!)† I† had help† from a couple of guys with a skill saw but I had to re-do most of† their work† to† get† it† right. It's† better† now† anyway† and I can isolate my bedroom from the barbershop so I can escape once in a while.
Things haven't really been too busy lately so it's† not hard† at† all† -† in† fact† I'm halfway through "The Fall of Japan" just to keep my mind busy.
I love you dear and† I'll† sure† be† glad when† I† can escape† from this crummy place and come home to you.† I sure hope we don't have any† cockroaches† at† our house† -† I'll sell!
Cu-Chi, Monday, June 9, 9:00 pm:
I† love it!† You look fantastic in it!† I love your new suit and can't wait to be with you on† the† beaches† of† old sunny† Calif.† I did notice the absence of a glorious suntan so I'll make you a deal, either a good brown tan† or† flat tummy† before† I† get† home† in† three† months.† OK?† If you really wanted to bad enough, I bet† you† could do† both.† I don't† think† I† will care either way I'll be so happy to be home, but it would make you stop feeling† guilty,† having† a flabby† tummy† at† age† 23† -† your† PRIME years.† Those who endure to the end will be saved!
I'm laying here on my bed keeping† an† eye† cocked† for anymore† of† those† man-eating† roaches that attacked me last night in here.† They're SO BIG and SO UGLY that they make† a brave† man scared.† I was going to send you one but it might scare you and the kids, so next time† I† get† attacked† I'll take a picture of one of them.
No† shower water† so I'm waiting patiently as the time goes by, just laying here listening to FM music and writing my love.
I† sure like my new door I put in, except for one thing
- everyone else uses it† too.† But† it† does† give† me† more freedom because† I† can† lock† my† shop† on† the outside to discourage people and still enjoy my bedroom.
I don't see how Dale and Gloria are going† to make† it on† Dale's† salary† but† I wish them the best.† And I resent that remark, "I'm glad you didn't MAKE me† work".† You know very well I never wanted you to work at all because it took away my role as provider for the family.† Of course, it was nice† when you were working.† You were always in top shape for the guys? at the office (i.e. no tummy).
But right now I'd settle for you† any way,† shape,† or form because† I† miss you so.† You know how much I love you so I'll close by saying it once more.† I love you more† than fleas† love† dogs,† Jews love bagels, Mormons love seagulls, babies love messes.
Cu-Chi, Tuesday, June l0, 10:00 pm:
I'm glad you like† the† bronzeware.† There† are† eleven different† knives,† forks† and spoons for each place setting so figure out what they're for.† I ordered some catalogs† so you† can pick out the next set of china yourself.† It's just because I love you.
I'm laying here listening to Laugh-in on my FM radio† oops,† it's† the Bob Hope special tonight.† Oh well, I don't have to- stay awake now.† I got back a bunch of pictures† from the† PX† so† I'll send you† a† few† at† a† time,† like you send me.† They are mostly of my trip to Saigon and the "Sniff".
Things are real quiet here at† Cu-chi† but †Pix† called today† and† said† that† they're getting rocketed every night now and they've lost three men in the† last - week.† He† said he might be going to Japan this month besides Australia.
I'm getting† my† bedroom† fixed up pretty good now and I'm going to paint my hootch and shop† soon† so† it'll† look good too.
Excitement,† I† got† a haircut tonight.† It rained this evening, hard.† The movie was lousy† so we† left† and† came back† to the TV.† There was shower water at 8:30 pm.† We had some popcorn tonight.† I† did† my† exercises† and† they're getting† easier.† I† think† you† take† divine pictures of my babies.† I think your new bikini is very becoming and† shows off what† you have beautifully. (No comment!)† I pray every night for your safety.
I don't know if I told you that Pierce† College† turned Pix† down on his request to re-enter school, so he can't get an early out after all.
I filled in most of the cracks in† my† bedroom so the roaches have a little harder time getting in now.
I† love† you† dear,† very† much† and I hope that you'll forgive me for starting all† my† sentences† with† I,† but† I can't write† about† things† that I don't do because I don't know about them anyway.