It was my 8th-grade history teacher, Mr. Danhausen, who started me on my life-long obsession with World War II.
It was my friend, Anthony Garrett, who provided me with a copy of his grandfather's journal.

Elwood Llewellin Garrett was an American businessman in Manila at the time of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.
This is his story, as he recorded it, of living under Japanese rule in an enemy-occupied foreign land.

May 30, 1942 - Memorial Day

Which is no different from any other [day] as far as we are concerned in here. Everything has been exceptionally quiet around here lately; not even any good rumors worth mentioning. It seems we are just existing from day to day and I sometimes wonder why. Got weighed this morning and am still going down; now to 159 pounds, the lowest in many years. While I am not particularly concerned, I'm hoping I don't lose any more or I won't have enough to hold my bones together. They seem to rattle every time I move now.

When we first came into this camp there were eight of us all together in a mess for the noon day meal, to which we all contributed. There was Louise and Howard, Joe and Em, Earnesto, Iberia and George and last but by no means least yours truly. We built ourselves a shanty and this was home for the eight of us up 'till a few days ago when things started to go sour. Howard seems to have aged considerably in camp and guess that is the answer to a lot of things. Then there being three women under the one roof is something else again, none too favorable. At any rate to make a long story short, a young revolution broke out in camp about a week ago resulting in one family moving out. Pure selfishness is the only reason I can see for it all. I don't care for these family squabbles even when I am not concerned however, they do happen in the best of regulated families, so I am told. I hear both sides of the case and guess there is much to be said for both. Any how, they are building their own shanty and that cuts our camp down to five, at this point.

As I have mentioned on several previous occasions, money is very scarce and getting worse all the time, which does not help the nerves either as there are many little necessities that we must go without. It so happens that I was able to borrow a little from a friend inside some time ago, but as he is now broke I had to negotiate a loan from a friend on the outside to pay off. The money originally borrowed was split between all of us to alleviate the situation for a while anyway. Well, I thought I could get in the cash without any one learning about it in our camp but this is a small place and of course, it was discovered, and because I said nothing about it to the rest of the camp, another revolution took place and now I am an orphan. And so it goes, life in a concentration camp. This is a real education, if I ever had one. No foolin!

Two friends of ours, Bert and Joe Reich, came into camp today after hiding out in the hills since the outbreak of war. Have not yet had much time to talk to them as they and every one else in our camp or shanty, kept them busy with all sorts of questions. From what I can gather so far, they have had a most interesting time of it trying to keep out of the way. In normal times, Bert was a wild gal if there ever was one. Have been on many parties with her and believe me you have to travel fast to keep up with her. I'm not exactly a slouch when it comes to lifting 'em over, even if I do say so myself, but I've got to be in rare form when that gal is around. Joe is a rather quiet type except when he has had one too many then he is a maniac, but that is very seldom. They both looked pretty well after their harrowing experiences and seem glad that it is now all behind them and they are in here with friends. They will undoubtedly have many tales to tell which I hope to make note of later on.

Guess I'm going screw-ball or just happen to be in the mood for scribbling today, as I seem to be doing a lot about nothing. John O'Malley a good friend whom I found in camp, is sitting across from me trying to make a Russian Dictionary or some such thing, so I have a little company with my writing today, so maybe that accounts for the extra amount of "bull." Had a gate pass yesterday to talk to a friend on the outside, through whom I hope to raise a little cash, if I'm lucky, so did not have a chance to make any entries here. However, as the rumor market has been very low lately, we havn't missed out on anything that I know of.

Siesta time is about over and the poker game about to commence so must sign off. At the present standing I am up P70.00 on the books so feel like a plutocrat, or some such thing.

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