Today I went exploring. But before I relate my tales of adventure, I got out of inspection today in the following manner. We were out at calisthenics when a runner came up and asked for 10 volunteers for some details. Nobody volunteered so during the next exercise 10 men were “drafted.” I couldn’t do the exercise because of my knee and while I was standing there, I felt a heavy hand on my shoulder and a voice say, “Detail man.” So, I was put on corridor detail, for the second time in 2 days, but I goldbricked a lot and missed inspection.
We have weekend passes but tomorrow I signed up to visit a place called Mound, Texas with the Red Cross. It’s supposed to include dinner in private homes, girls, ranches, horses, girls, eats, girls, etc.
So, this afternoon my pal, a fellow from Wisconsin that I met down here, Don Lind, and I decided we’d hitch a ride somewhere and see what developed. We got a ride in a truck to Gatesville and then walked 2 blocks to a highway. A few cars passed and we were soon discouraged but I said, “one more car.” The next car did stop, we piled in and the driver said he was going to Hamilton, Texas. We said OK and settled down for the trip in his brand new Chevy. Hamilton is 32 miles west of Gatesville and is really out where the wild open spaces start. It’s pretty country, rolling ranch land with occasional bluffs and hills. At times you can see miles and miles in one direction. We passed small herds of cattle and a few even were walking on the highway so that we had to detour around them. Suddenly we arrived in Hamilton. These western towns appear out of nowhere and go by about as fast. It’s built in typical style of this section. A large square with the courthouse in the middle surrounded by the business district which is the perimeter of the square. That’s all. Maybe one or two side streets but the stores, movies, etc surround the courthouse. There are a million cars, some new, some antiques all clustered in all directions around the courthouse making the street about half it’s original width. Most of the men wear ten gallon white felt hats, a lot wear cowboy boots and some very fancy diamond (glass) studded belts. Oh yes, they all wear leather jackets, so they all look alike. Our chauffeur said that he was going back to Gatesville in about an hour and if we wanted to wait and go back with him, he’d be glad to take us. So, we walked around a while then sat down to wait. We waited about 2 hours then gave up and went to the highway to hitch another ride in. There we almost went in hysterics. A service man is not a too common sight here as in other towns so while we waited and looked at passing cards their occupants didn’t stop, but just waved to us. What they thought we were standing there for, I don’t know, unless it was just to be sociable and wave at passing automobiles. We soon gave up and walked back to where our first car was parked. Soon as we reached, its driver came up and said “Ready to go?” “Yes, sir” we replied, hopped in and marveled at the miracle. We arrived in Gatesville, ate, saw a movie and came back.
Well that’s all, hope to give you an interesting account of tomorrow’s activities.