I will never forget, not even if I tried.
By: Edd Vitsun Airncraft

Amongst my droll stories of adventures across the world, I’ve related about being in the Philippine Islands during the 1970s. It was not during one of the more happy times in my life. See, my real wife of the times, who happened to be my first wife, had just attempted suicide and had failed fortunately. But I was to be accused of getting her to that point rather than the real culprits who had gotten her accustomed to a kitty-cat and puppy-dog existence, and like myself, no connection to the street.

My name was known many places as being connected to aerospace and the opportunity presented itself for me to become a part of a team going to a place called Subic Bay, Cubi Point, close to and adjoining the City of Olongapo in the Philippine Island of Luzon. I was a representative for Federated Aircraft of Long Beach, California, a major airframe manufacturer. This happened from late 1966 to midway in 1967. The group of us would leave from a Navy Reserve Center in Orange County, California to do specialized work at Subic Bay.

I will imbellish a little on the trip there as it was nearly a calamity. The rat’s ass military aircraft we went on didn’t really have adequate seating, had no real heating, and the engines were original, overhauled...so they said.

But after we had left Guam, and were about 150 miles from the P.I., one after another of the engines failed and we made it in, finally, to the base on ONE engine. How were we to know that this was a scrapped aircraft and that a crew was preparing to take the whole fucking plane apart and sell the metal to a “jeepney” manufacturing plant in another island city?

See, that was the whole fucking thing. We were expendable. The main thing that the military wanted to do was get that scrappable plane to the P.I. and off-load it and get us there if it just so happened to be the case. We were lower in priority that the junker plane was. Once again, the angels of Heaven were watching out after ME, ergo the rest of the occupants of the plane.

On the way over we stopped at some places that were involved in the “Big One,” meaning WW2. In this flying coffin where we were making the trek, we were reminiscent and cognizant of the skin-flint, cheap-ass, scum-bucket company for which we were working. They really didn’t think much of us or they would have sent us over by commercial aircraft. Things haven’t changed much as far as higher management. They are still thinking about their own comfort zones and their own enrichment. The CEOs are still a bunch of skinflint cocksuckers and paying dearly for their lack of foresight as much as their lack of foreskin. “Save a nickel and spend a buck, as long as they have it...on themselves.” They damned near got us killed and again, had it not been for the angels in Heaven, we would have punched out in the Pacific Ocean. We got close to old glory and our shorts were plenty soggy by the time we got to the runway. It was a damned close call.

Immediately, the local cocksuckers got to going on tearing down the old military transport plane. Some junker that crate was. Once we arrived, people observed the nail marks in the seat backs and the white lips and blue jaws on some of the people. It was my first taste of the P.I., but it was not to be the last. I didn’t realize that at the time this happened.

The Vietnam conflict, the war, was in full session and of course we were to see some of the real goodies as the planes we were working on, soon to be, were fresh from the combat zone and had slugs and holes in them. It was our job to ensure that no more of the fucking Soviet ground to air missiles or other fucking slimy-ass Commie weaponry got through to knock these aircraft from the sky.

Of course these were, in fact, airplanes made by Federated. More and more of our troops were being fed to the lions and instead of trying to win the Goddamned war, the fucking assholes in Congress were listening to the antiwar demonstrators. That fuckhead Johnson was up to a lot of two-faced tricks all designed to hurt the little guy and waste taxpayer money.

Clark Airbase over by Angeles City was handling a godly share of the near-casualties and I got my opportunity to see a steaming near-corpse being toted in from one of the triage choppers straight from combat across the channel in Vietnam. The poor guy was missing more parts then an Altzheimer’s patient’s memory. We were right smack-dab up against way more than we had ever bargained for.

Now socially, getting what you damned well wanted was no problem. We were civilians and didn’t get near as much hassle as the military troops got. We could go to the O-club, the Acey-Ducey and the Top of the Mark NCO club. And of course, the main course was to be found in town. This was Olongapo and any dumb-ass hick knew that was where you went to get your tool serviced, your flute tooted, your bone honed, etc. Anybody on the face of the Earth could score, and all you had to have was the price of whatever kind of party that you and Missy wanted to have.

They catered to all the needs of the troops and the civilian “advisers.” I was considered a civilian “advisor” and of course it was sort of “hush-hush” what it was we were there to do. But you see, all the “girlies” there knew exactly what it was we did and they probably knew more about the black boxes and equipment we worked on that most of the other people there knew. It was no secret any more than when it was that the next aircraft carrier would be coming in. See, they just plain knew every-fucking-thing that went on in the world just like cats do. Ask them and they knew facts.

The area was prone to excessively high and humid heat. Most of the civilian advisors went down to the market place and got some local barong tagalog shirts and cool weather togs. I found that I had come totally unequipped for the kind of weather there was, and of course knew that I was still married and had to keep up correspondence. (Bear that in mind as the tale continues.) The downtown area of Olongapo was comprised mainly of bars and restaurants, specialty shops, and a lot of the regular offices and such that you would find in any burg. The mayor was a gent by the name of Mr. Gordon, an Americanized Filipino had lots of ties, some to the military, some to business and industry and other ties to the generally regarded as powerful in the P.I.“mob” that was generally regarded as powerful in the P.I.

The emphasis was on sex and the ladies of the town were pretty much one business that paid off well for the controlling group. This was one city that made its fortune on “monkey business.” Of course they sold “monkey on a stick” (which in reality was good-tasting pork with seasoning on a bamboo shoot.) The bars boasted of girls sufficient to keep a large contingency of gents happy all night long.

You see, each bar amazingly enough, had its own flavor, and its own girls, and each place had its own personality. A guy couldn’t possibly visit all the bars even if he tried for an entire year. There were bars ON TOP OF bars. From memory, I know I spent an awful lot of time in a place called d’Tender Trap, New Paulines, the Zanzibar, and of course, the U & I. Of course, one could not forget the Texas Playhouse and Shorty’s.

There were others, of course, such as the Club Rio, the Mozambique and the Gateway Club.One could get an excellent meal at the Admiral Restaur-ants and there was even Dr. Falcone to fix a guy’s teeth and one could get a suit or two if the season required...but better yet was to get something like the entire barong tagalog outfit with the white trousers to match. Barongs were worn not only in the P.I., but also in the Caribbean, South America and Africa. It is probably the world’s most identifiable street clothing.

There were probably and literally hundreds and hundreds of clubs on many levels from the ground surface. Some were on second and even third levels and there were girls from all over who worked the bars. The best of all in class was New Paulines. It was owned by a wealthy Chinese gent as were many of the clubs. They knew what they were doing and what the average thinking customer expected. Of course how could they be thinking when the blood supply was located, for the most part, between their legs?

These girls all had their dress codes and expected their johns to have nice clothes on and money to spend on their drinks (which were not really drinks as they were carbonated water with a film of drink on the top.) The regulations (which I had an opportunity to scan once) looked like they had been drawn up by a Philly lawyer and left absolutely nothing out.

The girls, I found out, were not pikers mentally, They were chosen because of not only beauty but brains, much in the same way as Playboy Bunnies. You see, they didn’t want any duh-guh-wuhs in their clubs.

Occasionally some well-dressed young dudes with shades on and cigarette in mouth were seen coming through the club toting a submachine gun and one was supposed to pretend like they never saw such. I know I never saw a damned thing. It might have caused concern on someone’s behalf, but not on my agenda. They could damned well do whatever their heart desired as long as they were toting around an UZI. When a chap might enter a club during the daytime, the guy would be greeted with..”Hey, BODDY, WANT A BEEEEER?”

It would be in the fairly amusing, rather clipped-tongue, Minnie Mousay frequency voice that was well versed in doing exactly what she was doing. She might be a day girl, not all that attractive, yet trained well and could give you information of any kind about any place in the whole fucking world. I knew this one lady who I would talk to and she was better than any Internet in that whatever you talked about, she was heir to knowing exactly what was going on at that instant most anywhere you wanted to mention.

How much did an Exec on that base make? What kind of communications equipment was on an F-16? Hell, these gals could tell you down to the nth detail something that you’d need to search otherwise for a week to find. When would the next supply ship be coming in and when would it end up in the berth where it belonged?

Just ask one of the bar girls and they might be a minute or so off, but they knew better than the military when all the stuff that was supposed to be classified...was indeed going to happen. See, to the bar girls, there was no such thing as a military secret or misguided information. They knew and they could rattle off stuff that they might not know how it fit together, but nonetheless, they knew.

At night, Olongapo was far different, a busy metropolis, with the ladies in their finest and latest fashions as dictated by Paris, London, Milan, Madrid and New York as well as San Francisco and Miami. Of course you’d learn that it was “Sam Pramcheesco” that they knew well, because everyone had a relative that lived in or near that famed city.

There would be Melita, Sally, Deena, Janine, Cora, Lela, Dani, Wanda, Kali, Corinne, Loli, Vera, Helen, Elena, Bunny, Yola, Vera, Rita, Sami, Paula, Dora and Sunni. It would be impossible for even an ugly dude to score or strike out in all the places there were to get one’s Johnson serviced.

For the novice, “short time” meant that you would have your entertainment with the lady for only an hour, a few hours, or the entire evening. But that was that, no more, no ups or extras. But “long time” would mean that you might stay with the lady and it would be perhaps a semi-permanent arrangement. Of course that meant it had to be worked out with the CEO of the club at which the lady had been working. That meant the exchange of a few hundred Pisos. You’d take it up with whomever was responsible for the “ownership” of the lady, something totally foreign to the U.S. But of course this was not the “States,” this was the Philippines.

A guy like me would take up living in town with the lady for whatever amount of time I or anyone else decided was good. But to “butterfly” was considered a no-no and could get one cut up pretty well, as at least one American could testify to...who got diced up pretty well for his indiscretion. Butterflying was to be going with one of the ladies long-time and then doing a short-time with a girl from another bar. Now doing two pigs in a blanket was not considered butterflying because it was mutually agreed on and the additional girl was acceptable if indeed the lady said it was okay.

I never did two pigs in a blanket, but was offered the opportunity all the same. I was glad I turned the chance down later on. I was repaid in more ways that I was when I eventually returned to the U.S. and discovered that things had contained domestic butterflying by none other than my own wife. How can a guy have a dual-standard like that? Damned if I know!

Could cost you plenty by both ladies, as I said, if a guy was long-timing and got caught in the sack with another. And besides, one got accustomed to one thing really quick. There was precious little that they didn’t know or find out lightning fast. You wanted to know something and were honestly long-timing with the little lady? You’d have your answer in anywhere from five seconds to an hour at the most. The “network” was thorough and was very exacting. Few wrong answers if any from these little ladies.

A quickie went for anywhere (at the bottom) and at the time, which remember was in the 60s, in the vicinity of 20P on up. At New Pauline’s, the price was in the vicinity of 100P for a good time. Of course a P was a Piso, the standard currency, which at the time was 3.75 to the dollar. The range of change was not that much, or wasn’t during the time I was there. The “long time” relationship meant going through the Papa-san or Mama-san and they were most interested in who was going to “long-term” their little girl, just like anywhere I suppose.

See, these girls were considered chattel or property as well as being sort of loved by the “owner(s)” of the girl. They were the property of the club. If the club were ever sold, the girls went along with the price of the club which most certainly raised the price a whole bumping bunch.

Once the papa or the mama-san gave the okay, that meant that the long-termer would part with some hefty cash, meaning about two or three hundred bucks American converted to Ps. But all in all, that was not so much of an investment because the long-termer would sign a contract just like for a new car and that meant that the girl was bona-fide, had been checked medically, didn’t have any venereal disease and would be faithful or answer to them.

See they made sure your honiko got her inspection faithfully every week and that meant that the only thing they could do for recreation other than you was to maybe enjoy the bed company of another girl, which was no whoop-dee-doo. Part of the floos you parted with to the girl came right back to you in terms of what she did for HER MAN, like I enjoyed.

By virtue of that, she would get certain things for her place, which was most certainly my pad, or anyone’s who was doing long-time with their girl. I’m relating this as it leads up to the remainder of the story at hand. The lady would get her man wee prezzies now and then as a part of the ritual. Since the girl was actually “leased out”, it was incumbent for the guy to come by every once in awhile and “sweeten the pot” with cigarettes or booze, whatever he could get off the base with that was virtually impossible to get in the town. I had several bags of booze and cigarettes and had paid off several guards who knew me and went inside the booth and lit a cigarette as I waved my pass and went across the bridge into town.

That was sort of an automatic thing that was recognized. A few American twenty-dollar bills were crucial and a guy could get one hell of a lot of Ps if he went to the right guy with a load of $20s. A hundred dollar bill would fetch a king’s ransom in Manila which I soon found out. I happened to have three of them and found myself toting along a whole handful of Ps just for parting with the three $100s. Most organized (Eastern Mafia) clubs had, as I mentioned, an operating manual that covered just about anything and everything.

The girl, even though she was going long-time, had the obligation to work at the club a certain number of nights a week to be retained on the rolls of the club. She valued her association...like an attorney at a law firm or an engineer at an architectural agency. That livelihood was considered to be their lifeline.

Hell, they didn’t know anything else. That Hong Kong attorney had thought of virtually everything in the contract. They knew that all too fucking well. They knew the sailor’s propensities as well as those of the contractor’s representative who was there for a longer but limited lifetime. He who ventured into this port under the selected circumstances had been well thought out and was represented by sections in the contract. They were extremely well-versed in what they had to do, as well as their rights. I never violated any of those rights and so therefore was treated quite well.

A guy just didn’t transfer his rights in a girl to some other dude any more than he would just transfer his rights to a house or car without first going through the proper channels. You had to know for sure, what you were doing over there and I guess I learned way more than the average person about all aspects of the business at that time. I even talked to one of the guys with a submachine gun by chance and learned way more than I ever should have which to this day I cannot talk about even if I wanted to.

Suffice it to say that I know way more than any American should know, just enough to get myself in a whole lot of trouble if I ever got down to the nitty-gritty about certain things. And so much for that. Everything had to be done by the book and those clubs knew that and knew what to do. I never had a bit of problem in MY..(ahem)...long-term relationship.

The Orient is not the U.S. or vise-versa and one learned about that and the stuff that needed to be known in no time flat. The hours were different, the temperature was different, and there were little pesties and demons that pervaded the area the likes of which man could do nothing about. I learned to get along with the huge cockroaches and other crawling and creeping and flying thingamaroos.

Women’s rights? I don’t think so. Yet, at the same time, conversely, maybe way more in some respects than in the United States. They think for a living and know way more, worlds more than American women about things that an American woman never bothers to think about. It depends on where you are and with whom you are at any particular moment in history.

Independent? A lot more so than American women. They don’t argue with you because there is no reason to argue. They never set up an argument scenario. She can be her man’s honiko, his advisor, his lover, a bitch in heat, a friend and a helpmate and put on quite a show for her lover need be.

“She” is no fool that just rolled off the turnip truck in the rice paddie. “She” cooks and mends and washes and gives her man a bath at the fountain in the courtyard, he in the nude and doesn’t think anything about it. “She” uses soap and the hose just like washing a horse using a bar of soap amazingly called “Proctor and Gambles” probably 50 years old, and yet sold over there.

“She” is no Jim Morrison “Amerrrrrican Wooommmannn” who would do the tomfool, samhill things that would and certainly could lead up to a divorce. That simply was not in the books. For instance, many times “she” would go to a church service at the St. Columban’s Catholic Church a few doors away and then come back to the place and put a 50P bill under Kuan Yin or Buddha himself. And then it was at that point when I realized the absolute sense and logic to that. That was the say “she” operated. (Note that there are quotation marks around she).

I am getting to something, see. “She” greet me at the front door, a man who was all dirty and sweaty from putting in a day inside the cockpit of an aircraft, putting up with the snit and snot from supervisors. A guy like me would get out of the jeepney at the front door and there “she’d” be. There would be the ice cold towel to refresh his face and an ice cold San Miguel for his mouth to calm down his fretful insides. San Miguel, y’see, was brewed right in the P.I. and had no preservative as it does when it is imported into the U.S.

After he was all calmed down from the day and he was served an excellent dindin, then it was her, looking him in the face like Sophia Loren was prone to do in the movies. “She”, looking for all the world LIKE Sophia Loren, would smile and say her never to be forgotten words....”HEY MAN! YOU WANNA MAKE....SOME?” Man, I never will ever forget those words.

Glory Hallelujah! Praise the LOOOORRRRD! The girl was some ride. I would feel Hevvone and Perrodise coming my way. And in no time flat, it seemed, I was where the fireworks, the pillowy Heavenly clouds were and I would be grabbing for the hand of God himself as I wanted to be at one with her. “She” took away the fever, the anger, the tough feelings at the base and reduced everything down to a common denominator called LOVE.

Some common ho who had no feelings? Shit, man, GET REAL! This was some kind of special lady who had feelings, knew how to get to the feelings I had and was special in that she did something that no American lady has ever done in that way that I suppose it took for her to do. It’s almost impossible to explain without going into a college course on communication. It was a matter of knowing just what I needed.

“She” made a guy feel as if he were the most special dude on the face of the Earth. She made a guy feel as if he were one of a kind and did special things like I have never seen take place on the American side of the ocean. “She” would ensure that I wrote home to my WIFE and KIDS, and get after me if I hadn’t. “She” wore out pictures I had of my first wife and my daughters. “She” would give me the most luxurious back rubs that I have ever had. “She” was interested in each and every thing that was super-personal to me and would want to know each and every thing I did as a kid and who I knew, what I was interested in, each calamity that had befallen me, and how I did, thought, knew, wanted, desired, and I even told her of my fetishes, and “she” would accommodate me by doing things that made me...well affected me in a way that I never had known before then and never have known since.

I was like a young tree that was ALLLLL ROOOTTT. My brain, at that particular moment, had no blood running though it. I know one thing. At the end of that and other “MOMENTS” there was a virtual sea of Navy spunk to be cleaned up and I thought I would never “get up” again in my life. I was all blue and shriveled and my legs didn’t want to work. I felt like maybe I was going to die and then realized I had just done something that many dudes do regularly in XXX-rated movies.

“She” would KNOW almost right away if I had a problem and then she would have a logical solution that made me think, “Now why didn’t I think of that?” I knew that there was at least one time when I forgot my wallet and I had to go back to her room and the jeepney driver would just smile and take me back to get my wallet and then back to the gate for the bare minimum, but of course I’d reward him as well with smokes or an extra 20P.

Mr. Blaylock’s jeepney service was way more than just a taxi. What could I say? I got preferential treatment and maybe it was a good thing that this kind of episode happened. I realized that there was at least one place in the world where I was liked...and in a special way, was loved. Soon there was no need to say...”PARA!” when I got to the house. The JD would know by rote that was where I got out.

The place was an old Navy WAVE barracks during WW2. It was still in plenty good shape and had been built like a fortress. “She” had a room and access to the kitchen along with four other girls who also pretty much had long-time with their guys.

(I had occasion to return there in 1979, but...see, things were all different. It is not bad to return to Hevvone and Perrodise fifteen years later, but in its own special way, don’t expect anything like “things that used to be” to still be there. I was looking for her in 1979, but there had been a fire, and a bad one at that. Things all had changed. None of the girls from the mid-60s. There were precious few of the same clubs and everything was country and western. I gave up attempting to find her.)

Now here is where we start getting down to the particulars and the specifics as if you were not wondering why I had not mentioned names and other points of interest as yet. Here goes.

There we were at the Thanksgiving 1965 party at the U & I. My immediate boss was there and it was partially for him because what it was, was his ”mother was ill and in the states and not expected to pull through, so he had to leave.” Everyone there knew that was a crock of horse manure, and that there were other complications with an ex-wife and kids and some other stuff that commanded his immediate departure for California. But all involved played along as if they didn’t know from shit what was Shinola.

He had been in a relationship, a long-time with a lady by the name of Ampuy Consuela Domenica (etc.) Dominguez-Rodriguez. She lived in the former military barracks that had been converted to this little cathouse and the sweetest one there was in all of Olongapo. Sure there were some fancier, but there were none that were more loving, as I would soon discover. Mister Dominguez, a sort of “father-in-law” lived topside.

See, the younger gent? He was living close to “Sam Pramcheesco.” He evidently, as I figured it, found another mate and had a family without actually having gotten out of the relationship with Ampuy. Which, this was considered to be quite okay over in the P.I.

The older gent had a refrigerator, television, freezer, American sort of furniture, nice decor, and the place might as well have been in the U.S. Most certainly he had lived in Northern California for 18 years. He was a welder and specialist at the base and made excellent money.

We had tea and crumpets (you get the idea) with him and his Mrs. a number of times and we got to know each other and he liked the way I was and what I had done. I would have liked to have brought her back with me...but well, see, that was impossible under the circumstances. Had I only seen ahead!

He had been in the Army, got retirement and some other bennies which accounted for his nice car and other goodies in the house that bespoke someone who had been around and had done some special things. He even got some bennies from the Philippine Government. The man was sitting at the top of fat city and knew it. He got his little rake off of what was going on down below, but didn’t make a big thing of it.

The club paid him a little stipend for Ampuy’s services as her sponsor and one who had let her use the family name despite their son being in the U.S. probably forever. His son had just “sort of been with Ampuy longtime” just long enough that it was accepted as a common-law marriage. There were children at one time but they were being taken care of somewhere else.

But here it was, for the first time that I was ever to have seen her and I sort of mentally and psychologically licked my lips because she was someone like I never had seen before, like being with a movie star. She was so pretty, but she belonged at least at the time, to another man. The big boss over my boss was doing longtime with Ampuy’s cousin. That was the trend of that relationship. Little did I know that the big boss was going to be leaving soon, and not too long after that, I would be in a position where I had to leave. The trend as well, was towards restricting the contractors from living in town.

The next time I was to see Ampuy was at a picnic at the base beach when we had a barbecue. She was looking like the proverbial girl next door mixed in with some model in Hustler. I started talking with her and I didn’t realize it, but I was getting to know her pretty well, at least enough to start getting pretty smashed up over her.

I spent a lot of time at the U & I from that point on and seemed like an eternity before she said she would like to go longtime with me. Soon she asked if I would like to come home with her after the club closed and I realized that maybe “she would want to teach me how to rock and roll.” I did and it seemed about five minutes later I was over at the U & I wanting to talk a bit with Papa and Mama-san.

They spoke English every bit as well as I did and no accent and it seemed almost like I was talking to an aunt and uncle. They were very warm and congenial and I guess I opened up the floodgates and told them all about what had happened, my first wife wanting to commit suicide over post-partem depression and all. They gasped and told me in effect that was a real bummer. They seemed more like they ought to be Mr. and Mrs. Gillespie living in Placentia than in Olongapo.

I was hers and she was mine until anything changed as far as my situation with the company. I still had to retain my $35.00 a month tie with the BOQ at the top base. Otherwise I was in town and living at an address that was as immaterial as it would be if it were Japan. Actually it was 2680 Magsaysay Drive, Apartado “C” reading that way on mail that I happened to see on the end table by the bed. There were guys who loved her as much as I did. But see, they were not there and me? I was.

I had absolutely no fear about traveling the O streets at night because somehow I felt that God was pleased with me and I suppose He was. This guy once sort of challenged me to give him some money. Then a cloudy shadowy guy whose face I couldn’t make out told the guy to move on or he would be real sorry and the guy who had challenged me yelled out and ran like he was on fire. I thanked the guy and he said, “You’re wecome...EDD!”

How did this guy show up at that precise moment...and who...WAS HE?

At the same time, certain sailors and certain civilians had ended up in the binjo and nobody really knew why or what they did...except maybe they did something that made them deserve getting offed. I had no such fears and sometimes, when it became necessary for me to walk back to the base, I did and often had to walk up the hill to my room where I would be if called upon to be there on some kind of check to ensure that I was there. Things had gotten chicken-shit as far as being on base at the time the truck was there to take the troops down to the hangar to work.

My first wife had a bout with her sanity just about the time I was getting ready to go over to the P.I. and it had everything to do with her childhood and the way she had been raised. I had my suspicions confirmed when a certain birdie told me that the old goat had his way with her when she was just in her teens and not all that long before I came along.

Certainly with the birth of our third and youngest girl, it was post-partem depression, but of course that wasn’t a common term at the time it happened. Her parents looked on me like a piece of shit after it happened and attempted to put the whole blame on me; but I had it out with them and told them just how it was and that it was their shitass way of raising kids unrealistically that had brought on the trigger for the suicide attempt. She was totally immature in her outlook on life and didn’t know how to handle money.

In O, it was to the movies to see James Bond movies and more and more, I felt like I was “going native” which is the fear that most people back in the states have about their men who are over in such a scenario. “Going native” is when the guy starts wearing zories and shorts and barong tagalog to the movies and stands during the P.I. national anthem, “Land of the Morning Sun.”

We’d go to the beach and spread out a blanket, having lunch and laughing like newlyweds over something silly. She would have some darling little outfit on that would have me constantly looking at her, telling her how absolutely beautiful she was. She was a gift in looking at as much as she was in bed. I knew she had sex on the side as a diversion with her girl friend. But that was looked on as something that the girls “just did” and I never even looked on it as anything but just something she liked to do. Sometimes it only made our sex just that much hotter and I had a chance to get them both one evening but thought better of it.

Ampuy then told the girl to find someone else because I was complete and she didn’t need the extra stuff anymore. Then immediately that frightened her as much as one evening when we hit the jackpot and she let out a shriek and holler and then tears came down her cheeks and she said, “Damn you Edd, damn you...you...make me come a whole lot. You make me come more than ever in my whole life.”

Sometimes she would attack me a lioness and I felt like there was no tomorrow. One time after three hour in one day I could hardly stand up. I crawled around until I could get on my feet. Amazingly enough, she really did look like Sophia Loren which many a guy commented on as they leered at her and then looked at me in jealousy, walking off shaking their heads in disgust and sorrow that they couldn’t land anyone near as beautiful as she was.

When some guy would leer at her like he wanted to spill his load inside her, she would look at me nose to nose and say “Hey Eddie, you want to go home and make some?” One guy’s teeth fell out of his mouth as he saw that happen. He possibly thought that he would have a chance once I left for the evening. This was, at least as far as he was concerned, curtains. In reply, I would look at her eyeball to eyeball and say in a John Wayne accent, “Well, little lady, ul...I guess...yuh talked me intuh that.” Ampuy would also say, from time to time, when I’d walk in, “Hey Eddie,...who loves you?”

Months later, when it was evident that I was going to be forced into leaving, because of medical reasons, complications due to my thyroid gland, it was equally evident that Ampuy was quite preggers. It was not by me, of course, because I had a vasectomy some time prior to going there. She related that it was due to the guy who had been there before, my immediate higher boss.

I told her at the outstart that I was chopped and channeled so that she had no fear of getting pregnant from me. I never once wore a rain-coat in bed and it was evident that she took care of herself, got a regular medical check as mandated by the club. Of course we know by now that certain things don’t prevent the spread of AIDS. C’est la guerre!

I went through all the legal ramifications with the Philippine Government in Manila and then again in Olongapo with Mayor Gordon. During that episode I gave his son a five-dollar bill. Being mayor of Olongapo presently, I wonder if the new mayor Gordon remembers me doing that or has that same five dollar bill?

I was told by everyone what a good, decent upstanding fellow I was and I got a certificate from the city that I think I had to turn in at the immigrations counter. Too bad there were no copy machines or I could have made a copy of it for posterity.

This guy in the cubicle next to where I was in the BOQ was having hysterics over getting to Ampuy after I left and I told him that was entirely up to not only Ampuy but to the dad-in-law and the fellow who was the CEO of the U & I club. I told him that, in other words, it was NOT MY DECISION. He sort of hung his head like I had let him down. I told him that if he passed the necessary tests, he might get lucky. I really was not interested in whether or not he did score; that was not my bag. I don’t know if she ever let him try out or not. It was not my ballgame any longer, you see.

She sent me a letter under the guise of her “father-in-law” which my wife was immediately suspicious about, naturally. But, funny thing was, she never opened the letter. She always asked me what was the content of the letter and I gave her some convincing story. That was just something that it was just as well that time swallowed up.

By 1979, though, I was really looking for Ampuy in earnest but as luck had it, not a trace. Nobody seemed to have a clue as to what had happened to her except that maybe the fire had gotten her. And it had been a massive fire that happened some years after I had left. It destroyed great chucks of Olongapo.

Just before I left, all the girls at the “house” were giggly and I wondered what was up. Along about ten o’clock, I knew what the laughter was about. She drew out this knife from the foot of the bed from under the top mattress. She sat lotus-style on the bed and played this little Japanese melody on her HiFi. All the girls were standing behind me and I didn’t know but what this was the real thing. Damn, Sam! So I got down on my knees and pleaded with her and told her what a great life it was she had ahead. I told her all about her wonderful qualities and did an unknowing self-esteem number on her before I even knew what self-esteem was all about.

Finally, all eyes lit up including hers and she said, “Hokey-dokey, Eddie, you convince me to live...no more Hari-kiri, I gonna go and get some rice soup for us.” The girls applauded and actually hugged me for just being me. Hey, try something like that...HERE!

Finally, silver wings, they were taaaakinnngg me awwaaaayy! Silver wings, sparkling in the sun. I thought that very sadly as the plane took off from Clark Air Force Base, that “Air America” plane (heheheheh, really no SHIT, it was Air America). It took me and all the other passengers to Alameda Air Station in California with absolutely no problem and then another plane took us to San Francisco International. From there I took another plane to LAX where as predicted by my wife months earlier, I didn’t recognize her or the kids. It was like something out of “Twilight Zone.”

I had been bit hard, senor. I never realized I had been so much in love with Ampuy as I was for months afterwards. Her daughter Edith would be close to 40 years old now. Edith was a beautiful baby and was being watched over by her sister on another island. If I had only known what was going to transpire and be in store for me in another few years, I would have handled certain things in a far different way. But you see, one never knows about a lot of stuff of that nature, that one’s wife is going to file for divorce.

I arrived in Manila International in November, 1979. Taking a hired car down those 90 or so miles to Olongapo, I wondered if perhaps I would be able to locate Ampuy and if she would have fared well during the time I was gone. I checked into a very modern hotel/motel at the edge of town and the very next morning I caught this thoroughly modern new jeepney with all the comforts of home plus stereo to the center of town.

The bridge to the base was no longer there. The main gate was in a far different area. Many of the landmarks I remembered were gone. Most of the clubs had new names and I was amazed at the change time had brought. There was a Kentucky Fried Chicken and Wimpy’s hamburger outlet, a fish sandwich place and they had “worldwide jukebox” on the radio.

It was served by a television satellite and you could get cable from Manila with all the stations you could possibly want to hear. The town actually had a newspaper finally, which one would have never imagined being there.

I searched and searched but to no avail. There wasn’t even a straggling person I knew to ask about Ampuy. The building where the U & I had been located was just another part of an office building next door. Country discos abounded in the area. Everyone was potentially a country and western star.

Elvis impersonators abounded as well. I soon latched onto a former P.I. film actress who had been in a few movies in past years. She worked in one of the C & W discos. Her name was Emy Roscoe. She was mighty good in bed...but then, she was no Ampuy. No use making a comparison, because it just wasn’t there.

She was all show biz and liked to put on the dog. I was more into attempting to locate the Church and the building where Mr. Dominguez and his wife had lived and the little cathouse bordering on the street. But all I saw was an empty spot where it was pointed out that “a church” had been located at one time. Obviously Catholics went to the huge new church located some miles away on the beach. It was new and gorgeous and had a lot of features the old church never dreamed about. There was an office building where the house had been located.

There had been one huge fire after I left and it had wiped out most of the town which was a tragedy. People tried to forget that because of the huge loss of life. The flames were just there and trapped people where they were so as not to allow them to escape. It had raged through the town like a firey tornado. It swallowed up people, buildings and stuff with no regard to what they were. Fire is indiscriminant.

Thousands died, their charred bodies were stacked high. Some people were burned so badly they couldn’t be identified. I tried the City Hall and they checked the records finding no evidence of anyone with the first name Ampuy let alone Dominguez-Rodriguez. They knew that Mr. Dominguez moved back to the United States shortly after 1967 and that was before the fire. He left no forwarding address.

So there I was, back to where all those guys in the movies have been when they try their hand finding THEIR honiko of times past. How does a guy, when he is singlesville once again, feel when he’s in a situation like this? Frustrated, strung out, aborted, helpless, halted and blocked in every way.

Wherever she is, I hope that she has happiness, whichever side of the golden veil she is on. It was a time I most certainly will never forget, not even if I tried.