Saigon, French Indo-China

Wednesday, August 21, 1929

It rained again this morning instead of this afternoon. There was no mail, so I left a note for Frank and Mort and made the forwarding arrangements in case I should leave on Thursday.

This seeming inefficiency in dining room service is getting to be very interesting. I wonder what the waiter turnover is. I’ve seen several new faces and missed some old just in the two and a half weeks I’ve lived here. The problem of tips is a hot one. I have only one “boy” to take care of in the annex. He isn’t so red hot at all times either. Has brought my coffee stone cold twice, let my bed go without making till evening once, and I’ll swear if I don’t believe he has turned off the shower except at certain hours so I won’t use so blamed much water. At first all was OK. Then the blamed thing refused to deliver. I finally found out it was on about 10 PM. But last night the “boy” happened to be around. When he left, the water did also. Wish I could tear off some French. As I can’t tell him what I want to, I’ll let it ride as I leave Friday.

I have had no less than six waiters in the dining room and an ice boy, thus no tips there.

My disbelief in miracles was completely dispelled at 3:30 PM today when I paid 33 piastres and received my first class ticket to Hongkong. The boat is slow in loading and will not get away before Friday, possibly Saturday. At any rate I’ll take up residence aboard sometime Friday.

I figure about 3,000 miles more before sailing from Yokohama, probably 800 of it by land. Then about 13,000 miles to home. Nine to ten weeks should make it all right—say November 10, allowing for possible waits for boat connections, etc.

Still plenty warm here, not quite so warm as it is humid I guess, though you don’t notice the latter. About all you do is swim all day long—every time you move—body or brain—you sweat. I feel even the cooler temperature after a rain. Will have to get acclimatized to the cooler weather of China and Japan.

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