I was happy, when I finally learned that I would be meeting up with my ship, it was going to be pulling into the Philippines. I was going to fly from San Diego, to Manila, and then take a van down the country, about 200 miles where the ship was going to be tied up at. About 6 other guys, and me, were going to the Philippines on an Air Force cargo plane that was going that way.
It was totally loaded with pallets of cold merchandise, headed to the Philippines for who knows what. We were just passengers. The seats we sat in, where temporary net seats, and they felt like it. They were seats made out of netting, and they were facing backwards, of the way you would sit on a regular plane, facing forward. We were facing backwards when you took off in the airplane, and you were forced to bend forward, instead of backwards, into your chair. The plane needed to be kept cold, and it looked like a London fog, inside the plane, just like we were sitting in a refrigerator. That was a very long 17 hour flight.
I was 19 years old when I landed in the Philippines. This by far, was one of the funnest countries a service guy could go to. If you just wanted to have a good time in the bars, and a good time with a bunch of pretty sexy Asian girls, you will love it there.
In the Navy, most of the guys that have not been to the famous places, like Thailand, or the Philippines, Korea, or Hong Kong, always want to know if what they heard was true, about what they heard from other guys on the ship. There is no way really to explain another country sometimes to someone, they just need to experience themselves sometimes.
Where are ship was tied up, was about 1/2 a mile from the main gate, which was located right next to party central town, called Olongapo. When you were on the base, it was big. The base had a laundry mat, you could do your own wash at, and the soda machines dispensed cans of beer for you while you did your laundry.
The base had a small casino on it, with slot machines. It had horses you could rent, and a nice golf course, that had wild monkeys, that would be up in the trees, and they would throw things at you, if you came to close to them.
In the Philippines, clothing and services were very cheap and easy to get. You could have all your laundry cleaned, pressed and bagged up for you, for only a few dollars. It was like that in town also. Your money could go far. For clothing, there were out door markets everywhere, and they sold lots of knock off clothing items, for dirt cheap prices. You could be the ugliest guy on the ship, and you would still get a girl. It was not if you could get a girl, but which one you would want for the evening.
Right when you walk out the main gate, there is a small bridge with a river underneath it. All the guys called this “shit river”. It might of been that, raw sewage was always in the river. But that did not ever stop the usually 4 or 5 boats that would sit in it, with young girls dressed up in white dresses, and holding cups, begging for you to throw money out to them. People would throw pesos, down into the boat to them, and this was about 100 feet from the main gate of the base, and the entrance into town, was just steps away.
The town had lots of lots of bars, with various themes going on inside. There were little souvenir stores, or sorry sorry stores, as they called them, and different bars and restaurants, just about everywhere you looked. The funny thing about the town was, girls were everywhere and easy to get, but pornography was not seen around town, and it was illegal.
We had a bar that most of the guys from the office would hang out at on a regular basis. Usually on the weekends, or day times after work each day, we would hang out there, because that was our hangout place. The girls there did not try to hassle you into going with them, only if you wanted to, and the drinks were cheap.
They wrote our names on their bar window, just like a lot of bars did, that had special ships, and special departments, that hung out there, and claimed that bar for their own. Our department, pretty much hung out at the Cindi Bar, right on the first block of town, down one block to the right, and easy to get to.
Some of the bars, did not look so big from the outside. But it might be so huge on the inside, when you went inside. Most all the bars had bands, acts, and other things going on inside, to get more customers. It was a rocking town at night time. Back then, there were no such things as AID’s, or any other decease that might kill you these days. It was one big town party each night, and it was a free for all, young sexy woman everywhere, and plenty of cheap drinks.
Most all of our whole admin office, would hang out together, after work, and we would always start in the same bar for drinks. Some of the bigger, better bars, that had more sexier girls, and where the drinks cost a little bit more, were where we liked to go, later in the evening, to pick the girls we wanted for the night, but not…