Mr. Lutz choked upon hearing Steffan’s answer.
“Hey old man… are you alright?”
“Call me Mr. Lutz you idiot! Please don’t tell me it’s not the community hospital nearby.”
“Listen kid, there is an unwritten rule on how we get our kaon. You do not get it around your neighborhood; try to go as far as possible. And also, this area here is mine. But first my story.”
The waiter approaches… “May I be of service sir?”
Mr. Lutz replies, “Yes, I would like to have my bill for the meal and… whisky for both of us… or what would you prefer Steffan?”
“I guess so… whisky it is…”
“I guess you’d better get us a bottle of bourbon or anything that strong.”
“I will be right back with your drink sir and I’ll have the bill for the meals after it.” The waiter turns around.
“So, what are we? Drinking buddies now?” Sarcastically Steffen asks.
“Look kid, we are not going to be friends if we don’t have to. I just haven’t met anyone stateside like us. These things are a bit territorial so this area here is mine go hunt somewhere else. But seeing that it’s just the two of us; I guess we need to help each other out.”
“Or else?” Mockingly Steffan smiles.
“Funny kid, funny, I guess I should start with my story then. Maybe I could get some sense into that thick hippie skull of yours.”
The waiter arrives with the bottle of bourbon and with it their bill for their meal and the whisky. Mr. Lutz pays for both.
1940s World War II
The world was at war back then, this time bigger than the last. I was stationed in Corregidor before hostilities broke between Japan and the US. I have not had a leave since I joined the army for two years.
The Philippines was my first post, I was eager to be assigned there because I have never been outside the mainland. I was also dumb and reckless. Anyway, I was in the Bicol area somewhere near Mayon volcano.
It was really rural; news doesn’t get to you right away. Plus, I was flying solo, I wanted to explore the country by myself, call me a romantic if you must.
Anyway, when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor I was shocked but it was already the 9th of December and I realized that the Philippines was already under attack by the Japanese.
It was also difficult to go back to Manila to my unit, since there were already rumors that Manila was obliterated by the Japanese. I was also curious on the next island of Leyte, in Eastern Samar to be accurate.
I heard of stories of how the American soldiers were slaughtered by the natives during the turn of the century, so I thought this time it would be the Japanese turn to get massacred.
That is if I could just get to the town of Balangiga.
With that said, I was just in time to get away. The Japs came scouring the region. To cut the long story shorter when the US forces fell in Leyte, I was able to reach that southern town of Eastern Samar.
I sort of went AWOL when we were ordered to surrender, because I didn’t want to be in a POW camp.
With that said, there were guerrilla units organized all over the island, I did not join one, not until I was in Balangiga. I believe if it was here that they were massacred, the Japs here would face a lot of losses.
When I arrived there, I asked the natives about the stories of how the Americans were hacked to death, no one seems to tell me the right story.
It was conflicting. Anyway, with the Japanese closing in on behind me I went up to the hills to hide along with the natives who have heard of the Japanese atrocities.
I shed my uniform and managed to acquire some clothing with darker colors from the locals. I looked ridiculous because it looked so small on me.
However, I still brought my uniform with me hoping to hide it somewhere and hide any American presence in the area.
Several men organized themselves as a guerrilla resistance unit or I thought it was; they invited me in of which I joined, being young and stupid.
My first taste of guerrilla warfare came when ten of us chanced upon a company of Japanese soldiers patrolling the mountains for resistance or whatever they were doing up there.
They were really in for a surprise.
I managed to swipe a couple of binoculars from the HQ before I left, so we had a chance to spot the Japs from a distance and prepare.
We saw them at around ten in the morning.
Steffan interrupts, “wait did you say you stole?”
“For Pete’s sake shut up and let me finish, and yes I stole one.” Lutz annoyed at Steffan.
The place that we were at was actually their hunting grounds. The natives were kind of crafty and sneaky bastards, they stink, and then I also stink.
Steffan interrupts again, “whose hunting ground, the locals or the Japs?”
The natives hunting ground.
They rubbed their skins with the leaves, I followed their actions. I did not know what that was for, I simply thought that it tricks prey or other animals around.
They have these dugouts on the side of the mountain path where they force the prey to pass and spear them or hack them with their swords.
We were having our meal, a small wild boar when we saw the Japs. In one of the dugouts was a kitchen or the purpose was where you cook your food.
Amazingly through their bamboo pipes they have interconnected several dugouts for the smoke to come out.
I think this confuses the prey as well as it confuses the Japs because the smoke came out several hundred meters from us and from different directions.
The timing could never have been better, we had our fill and we were ready for them. Since I do not speak their language and yet they do speak English well enough, I followed only one guy his name was Intoy.