Saturday, August 3, 1968
We had fewer mouths to feed with four guns displaced in Thuong Duc. There was increased activity around Hill 65, and India Company was sending out more daytime patrols. This combination of these events caused the breakfast and dinner meals to be well attended. With few left on the Hill during the day, lunch was just a trickle of Marines looking for a big serving of Rainbow Jello. The heat would sap energy, and hydration was critical.
Reb had perfected the Jello-making process, and we had a reputation of being the only mess hall to serve it every day. Saturdays had evolved into a picnic style meal with assorted cold cuts, macaroni salad and one-inch cubes of Jello.
Captain Robb worked his way through the chow line. It was all set up for self-service: bread, assorted trays of thinly-sliced meats (ham, bologna, salami and pimiento loaf). We also had Velveeta cheese available, as well as peanut butter, grape jelly and other condiments. Robb always had a complaint . . . today it was, “Why don’t we ever have real cheese?”
Although it was a question, I had learned to remain silent (he didn’t expect an answer). Captain Robb was not a leader — his troops avoided him and kept their heads down whenever he spoke. They were embarrassed.
The afternoon Admin run brought the mail and the August R&R roster. Reb was going to Sydney for a week, starting on August 10. He received an information sheet listing hotels offering discounts and amenities available. One hotel advertised their proximity to the National Art Gallery . . . Reb was interested.
Next Edition: Fernando Arrives