August, 1965 RAF Changi, Singapore:
When the RAF Police were called in, our friend was having a Rolling Good Time. Allan Thomson's at it again with his Tiger and Reckless Group.
|Writer and This Blog's Contributor Allan Thompson RAF Changi 1960s.|
In August, 1965, one of my friends (Michael) spent a week in hospital undergoing surgery to correct his sight. On his release, he suggested having a small party to celebrate the success of the operation. Four of us (Michael, Geordie, Jay and myself) went to the Chalet Club at RAF Changi for a few quiet beers. The bar staff were playing "With The Beatles", the second album by the group, and we all sang along as it played.
I was festooned with rice, strips of pork, squid rings, bamboo shoots and prawns, which I tried to brush off my clothes as I rose to my feet. We apologised to the diners and offered them some money to buy more food, and gave the stallholder a few dollars to replace the broken crockery. We decided to leave the bicycle leaning against the wall of a building and walked along to the Changi Millie Bar (formerly called the Changi Milk Bar) where we met our two friends and had another beer.
When we left that bar, Geordie suggested that we go back for the bicycle which we mounted with me on the crossbar once again. We cycled along the village street and Geordie said he was going to enter the camp by the side gate. He turned right to go in but, on finding the gate was locked, he went straight through a tall hedge beside it. We removed the bicycle and ourselves from the hedge, brushing twigs and leaves from our hair, and wiping the scratches we had received during the mishap. Instead of abandoning the bicycle there and then, we foolishly decided to continue along the main road towards the main entrance to the camp.
The next morning, my nostril was completely blocked and my right jaw was in agony. When I looked in the mirror my face seemed to be lop-sided and, if it hadn't been for the pain, it would have struck me as rather comical. I reported sick and was sent up to the RAF Hospital where an X-Ray confirmed that I had broken my right jaw and an operation was required. The operation was carried out that same afternoon and when I regained consciousness I was lying on top of a bed in a ward containing about eleven other patients, including two fellow Scots from the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders.
I spent a week in hospital and I passed much of the time reading: "The Singapore Story" by Kenneth Attiwill, about the Fall of Singapore, and "A Thread Of Scarlet" by Bruce Marshall, a novel about a Roman Catholic priest. In the air-conditioned Intensive Care ward next to ours, a young man lay in a coma with several tubes attached to his body.
|Popular TV Shows In The 1960's|