Only one outing from 9.45 to 11 am. Walk around and one ball game. Some more people seem to have arrived and that is probably why no outing this afternoon, also no bath but I have just had a wash down with my flesh gloves so am not worrying very much. Mingail got a parcel yesterday and I have profited there from to the extent of an orange, a bar of chocolate, three small biscuits, tow pieces of pisang saleh (banana) and 5 Mascot ‘Royal’ cigarettes.
It was during the period too that I was guilty of a very foolish and thoughtless action which had, however, its amusing side. It was at the Chinese New Year which the Chinese celebrate with a seemingly endless stock of fireworks which they let off for days on end, culminating in one deafening mass explosion at the actual dawning of the new year. Fenton and I, being what we were at that time, could not let this opportunity for further pranks pass and accordingly we purchased a stock of squibs large and small with which we proceeded to amuse ourselves. In an effort to very the explosive effects of the large bombs we let some off under an inverted empty petrol tin and were gratified by seeing the tin rise about three or four feet into the air with the blast. After a few times I said to Fenton, ‘I wonder what would happen if you were to sit on the tin?’ Fenton replied, ‘Try it and see.’ So in my weak mindedness I lit the fuse of the large squib, clapped the tin over it and sat down – but not for long. Even the memory of the subsequent proceedings causes me to squirm as I sit on my stool. A few seconds later I was hopping around with my hands clapped to my posterior feeling as if I had been kicked by a horse, while Fenton was rolling on the ground in a fit of helpless laughter. This instance reminds me of another foolish action of mine many years ago when I was about 15. I had cycled into the country on Saturday afternoon to visit the Primrose family who were spending their summer holidays at a farm some miles from Aberdeen. The son, Norman, and myself started amusing ourselves somersaulting over a heap of hay in the farmyard, We did this by running at the heap and just in front of it putting our hands on the ground and throwing ourselves head over heels so tha we landed on our feet on the far side. At length, encouraged by our prowess I suggested throwing ourselves over without using our hands and agreed to be the first to try the experiment. So I ran towards the heap, pushed my head into the hay on the rear side and over I went. My momentum was such, however, that when I landed on the other side my head kept on travelling and came down on my knees with such a whack that I was almost knocked unconscious. My nose suffered most because the bridge of that organ came in violent contact with one bony knee. Not only did my nose bleed freely but the blow raised a bump on my nose which, even after all these years, is still visible.
1 September 1942
Out today from 9.45 to 11 am and 3 to 4 pm. shave with own razor in cell. In the past 3 days I have exchanged ‘Woodstock’ for ‘A Scarlett Sin’ by A & C Askew, that for ‘Caucasion Tales’ in Dutch by Lee Tolstoi and that again for ‘Fromont Junior and Risler Senior’ by Alphonse Daudet.
2 September 1942
Fatty is back. Out from 4.15 to 5.30 pm. Two ball games. Exchanged ‘Fromont’ for ‘Freely Forgiven’ by J B Horton & Kate Drew, which without reading have exchanged with Jack Husband for ‘The Alain Family’ by Alphone Karr.
3 September 1942
Out from 4.30 to 6.15 pm. Run round, jerks. Races of 100, 200, 400, 1000 metres. Prize giving tomorrow.
4 September 1942
This was the 5th day of another reign of terror, hence the little writing done. Out today from 10.45 to 11.30 am prize giving and jerks. Less than half an hour later out again for inspection by big bug who together with all other jays took salute. The BB’s informed us this afternoon that all had departed. Very strange.