Italy Late September 1944. Of mice and fleas. I must relate a short story about the mice and fleas.
In Fox troop we had a great tall gunner from Winnipeg called Bill Kolonoff.
Bill and I had thrown our fart sacks as we called anything resembling a sleeping bag, into a small chicken coop. This was alongside our troop command post. Mind you there were no chickens in the coop. As I went to go to sleep a small mouse tried to bury me by digging a hole like a good fellow near my feet. I do not like mice and least of all one that would try to bury me before I was dead. Maybe I smelled that way. This little mouse was very determined and resisted any attempt of my catching him, so I covered my head and closed all holes so that this mouse would stay out of my sleeping sack.
Bill Kolonoff on the other hand did not mind this mouse and did not help me discourage it either. I awoke some time in the early morning to see and hear Bill scurrying around. Ah I thought that mouse has got him. But no such luck! I said Bill what are you doing He replied that he was putting flea powder all through his fart sack .
I just went back to sleep as I only feared the mouse not the fleas. Next morning Bill stood up, all 6 foot four of him, and said take a look at these flea bites.
Here was poor Bill with thousands of flea bites. Red spots so covered his body that you could not find a place to put a dime anywhere without covering a flea bite. I checked out my mouse who had piled some earth on my sack but that was all. I escaped the MOUSE and THE FLEAS but not the green apple two step that I will relate in a future story.