Feb. 2, 1942 (Monday)


The people that seem to be flying nowadays (since the war) aren’t the same old bunch that used to hog all the flying time in peacetime. The planes (in the navy at least) are being flown by ensigns (mostly) and Lt.jgs, while the Lt.s and above are only too happy to stay on the ground. Most of them have a mild case of jitters.

The skipper, true to the dear old Navy traditions, despite the war, stresses the uniform regulations — what does it matter if the mosquitoes bite our legs to a pulp, the regulations say short black socks, so short they will be, even if khaki ones (long) do look better.

The Asiatic Fleet, despite the admitted seriousness of the far eastern situation for the past year, was permitted to continue flying PBY-4s, the oldest and most out-of-date patrol bombers in the fleet, while the British had already begun discarding the “5” is out of date — even the flying schools all had PBY-5s. Someone should be hauled up and shot.

My first patrol tomorrow morning (5 a.m.) with Brownie — Makassar Straits — hot spot!