This was a reserve area which 3RAR adjourned to following the
extrication of 6 platoon from HAM SANDWICH. Also just after the flap when
3 id got careless with their ownership of 355. The portly gentleman at
center was Minister for Army, in the government of Bob Menzies.
is mingling with the diggers around a 44 gallon drum, in which a warming
fire was burning. Winter was just beginning and this was no place for thin
blooded Aussies. The very latest cold weather gear had recently been
issued, and it wasn't bad. For an example I shall use the gloves we wore.
Seen on the digs are fingerless woolen under-gloves. Worn over the top of
these were another thick pair which had a thumb piece, trigger finger
piece, then the remaining three fingers enclosed in yet another section.
They were so designed as to allow you to operate your weapon, without your
skin contacting the freezing metal. Finally there was a very large pair of
white, weatherproof gloves with just thumb separated from the four
fingers. These still allowed you to do some work, and came up to the
elbows. The two gloves were joined by a long length of tape, long enough
to go across your shoulders. Thus if you needed to discard them in a
hurry, they still hung in place over your shoulders.
Someone stole Josh's whiskey on this visit to keep the Diggers spirits up.
To get the full story
of his visit to the boys in Korea, read Tim Holt's 3 short stories:
FESTIVE SEASON 1951. I still laugh at the memory of it all.