Tink Returned to Duty

old hooch
The Old Sandbag Hooch

Friday, October 18, 1968

The rain stopped temporarily, but the sky was menacing with dark fast-moving clouds.  The CID Sergeant ate breakfast, gathered his gear and hunkered down in the Officer/Staff section of the mess deck.

After breakfast Tink informed me he had to report to the Battalion Aid Station (BAS) at Hill 37.  It was his follow-up exam after 10 days on penicillin tablets, and he would receive a final injection.

Fernando checked in before leaving on the Admin run and asked if there was anything special we needed.  The answer was always the same, “fresh produce.”  His first stop would be Hill 37, dropping off Tink and the CID official — good riddance.

Sumo and I discussed the issue of the Top using our hooch as a hiding place for visitors.  We both understood the need to insulate certain guests and the convenience of our hooch having an extra bed.  The cooks’ isolation from the rest of the battery made it an easy choice.

We decided to refresh our old sandbag hooch and set it up as a transient barracks.  I went to the Battery office and presented the idea to Culverhouse.  He seemed open minded, and we walked down the hill to inspect it.  The structure was solid and dry inside, but the smell of mildew was strong.  He asked me to get Doc Furman to assess the hooch’s habitability.

The old sandbag hooch not only failed Doc’s inspection, but it was condemned.  There was mold growing on the cloth sandbags, and the rotting wooden floor was crawling with bugs.  It was “Red Tagged.”

Next Edition:  Reb’s Solution

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