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Poor Rations

Heroes Remember

The basic ration was poor quality rice which I guess in retrospect was good for us because it had some husks left and so on so... completely polished white rice perhaps would not have been good for us. filled with weevils, I guess that gave us our protein. Some people used to try and pick them out but that was hopeless. So it was basically rice with tea which I don't think was really made out of tea leaves, and vegetables, sometimes not the real vegetable, just the... not potatoes but potato leaves, not carrots but the greens from the carrots and stuff like that. Now that's the basic ration that you could rely on seven days a week. I remember once we got I think it was octopus or squid or something, horrible stuff. Once we got a little bit of, I don't know, fish heads, we got the odd, we got the odd thing, but, of course, it was not a very balanced diet. Now some people augmented the diet depending on whether they had anything to sell or not over the fence. Because you could get things. You could get, I think we bought a pig once. Since I'm Jewish and you're not supposed to eat pig, they said it was turkey for me and pig for everybody else.

Mr. Golden describes a basic diet of weevil infested rice and vegetable green 'soup'. Supplements included oddities such as octopus, fish heads, and on one occasion, very unusual 'turkey'.

David Golden

The third of four children, David Sinclair was born on February 22, 1920 in Sinclair, Manitoba. His father, an insurance salesman, moved the family to Vancouver, returning to Winnipeg when Mr. Golden was ten years old. In his third year at the University of Manitoba, he joined the Canadian Officer Training Corps. Mr. Golden missed his University graduation due to a May, 1941 call up by the Winnipeg Grenadiers. As a 2nd Lieutenant he served with the Grenadiers in Jamaica. After returning to Canada he was assigned as an intelligence officer to the Royal Rifles, with whom he went to Hong Kong. Mr. Golden was imprisoned in Hong Kong for the entire war. After returning to Canada, he practiced law.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
June 30, 1998
Person Interviewed:
David Golden
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Hong Kong
Hong Kong
Winnipeg Grenadiers
Intelligence officer

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