March 16, 1943 (Tuesday)

“Button,” Espiritu Santo

Patrolled 800 miles out to Ontong Java and Rekata Bay. Excellent weather all the way — for a change. Passed along the NE coast of Malaita on my way home and was astonished at the number of small native villages, most of which were piled onto tiny islands in the offshore lagoons. Some of the coral islands were so small that they were devoid of vegetation, yet even they were crowded with two or three thatch huts. Some of the larger islands had their villages clustered in the shade of coconut grows, their houses in neat rows on the white coral sand. Very idyllic looking.

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