David Allen Of Hopedale In Tokyo

    HOPEDALE, Nov. 27 - David S. Allen, fireman 1c, serving on the U.S.S. General W.H. Gordon,
    has written an interesting letter to his parents, Mr. and Mrs. J. Gardner Allen, telling of his visit
    to Yokohama and Tokyo. Excerpts from the letter follow:

     About the first landmark we saw as we approached Yokohama was Mt. Fugiyama. They tell
    me that it is snow capped but all we saw was the base. The top was covered with clouds.
    Yokohama is inside of Tokyo Bay, about 20 miles from Tokyo. When I read about the
    American sub that sneaked into the bay a few years ago and sank so many Jap ships, I
    figured that the bay was about the size of New York harbor so I wondered how the heck they
    ever worked to and still got out again afterwards. It's a lot larger than that, though. It must be
    20 or 30 miles in diameter. Yokohama is fairly level but is surrounded by hills.

    I had one liberty while we were there, so had a chance to look around, but there was not
    much to see in Yokohama, so we got on an electric train and went to Tokyo. The trains were
    terribly crowded. No one here carries any bundles in their hands; they strap everything to their
    backs. The women carry the small children that way. There is no such thing as women and
    children first on the trains. It is every man for himself and you can imagine how the kids on
    their mother's backs make out. They are squashed and are usually bawling their eyes out but
    no one pays any attention.

     When we got to Tokyo we thought we'd be smart and visit Hirohito in his royal palace but
    about all we saw was the outside. The grounds cover about 450 acres and is surrounded by
    a high stone wall and around the wall is a moat broken only by the many gates which give
    entrance to the grounds. Each gate is guarded by two Japanese guards and two M.P.'s so
    there was no chance. But in talking with one of the M.P.'s he told us that he had seen the
    emperor only once and that was when he went out for the big meeting.

    From the palace we went to the Dieppe building, which corresponds to our Congress and
    then, being hungry, we looked up the Red Cross but could get only coffee, so we did not stop.
    It was the best foreign Red Cross headquarters I have ever seen and looked as though it
    must have once been one of Tokyo's best hotels. We then went looking for souvenirs but
    found very few and those were expensive. Some of the boys wanted to buy kimonos to send
    home but the prices ranged anywhere from $63 to $100 in American money. I have some Jap
    money to add to my collection.

    Yesterday some of the officers and men brought a mess of Japanese rifles back to the ship
    so everyone in the crew will probably have one for a souvenir. They haven't passed them out
    yet and I do not know what my luck will be.

    When I reach Korea I will write to you again. I do not know what my chances are for getting
    home for Christmas; it will all depend on what happens when we get back to the States.

    Milford Daily News
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