As I mentioned earlier, we went north in Jan. of '59. The project lasted about 6 to 7 months and was completed in phases. The first month or two were pretty much a muddy mess as we got hit with the rainy season. We bathed in a small stream near camp and worked at improving our living conditions as we began some trails working outward from the camp area. As you can see from the first few pictures we really needed the creek. As things dried out we were able to make progress on the roads as well as the camp as can be seen in earlier pictures. When we became more civilized, dogs began to appear with guys coming back from their weekend at Koza. There were always stray dogs roaming Camp Koza so they were adopted and brought north. Our evenings were cards, throwing our K-Bars at a silhouette target and a bit of music.
One of the guys, Wright I think, collected poisonous snakes (Habu's) and I think he was able to sell them for the venom.
Things really improved when the Water Point was completed with clean water and warm showers. One of the improved roads was from North Camp through the valley where the Water Point was and on to the ocean at Ada. The trails that we made for training were only as wide as the bull dozers and usually passable by jeep. As we neared the end of the project we had to connect what was known as the Hudson Trail at a point north of Ada.
This involved just a few of us and we set up a small camp where this would be completed. The main camp was dismantled and all the equipment was transported back to Camp Koza by truck and boat.
When the trail was completed the C.O. and others arrived and had a ribbon cutting ceremony. The remaining equipment, with the exception of one bull dozer, was taken to Ada and transported south. Witt and I took the remaining bull dozer and drove south to the next little village where we cleared an area for a play ground. It was an interesting experience as we spent two days living with an Okinawan family who welcomed us into their home. This was a very simple home but much nicer than our pup tent. When we finished, we drove the bull dozer further south where the road improved to meet a low boy truck for the dozer. Our uniform of the day was very lax during this whole experience and we were still wearing our P.T. shorts and sombreros. There was a tiny store at the intersection where we waited and snacked on some things from the store. When the truck arrived with a jeep escort we were shocked to see a captain riding along. He was equally shocked to see how we were dressed and told us to get into uniform. I guess you don't salute wearing a sombrero.
That was an interesting end to an interesting adventure. I plan to post one more group of pictures Re: the village of Ada. I would be interested in hearing from anyone who has information/experience from this era or area.
Gene Wing [firstname.lastname@example.org]