By Sgt. John McLeod

YANK Staff Correspondent

MANILA, THE PHILIPPINES—When Manila traffic switched from the left to the right side of the road, changing centuries of custom, there was quite a to-do around the place. For one thing practically all of the city’s detachment of movie cameramen were out recording the event for posterity.

luzon army cameraman

Horse drawn transportation in the Philippines

One signal Corps cameraman had the job of trying to find a caratella driver who could make his horse sit down, the idea being that horses used to traveling on the left hand side would rebel against moving to the right and drop in their tracks rather than do it.

The sergeant-cameraman went from one of Manila’s many pony-powered taxis to the other, trying to explain what he wanted. The drivers all paused politely to hear the GI’s question, but then just looked perplexed and drove away.

He finally went up to a Filipino policeman and asked him to help out as an interpreter. Speaking in Tagalog, the policeman asked one driver after another, but the drivers just looked annoyed and rolled on.

“What’s the matter?” asked the cameraman.

“Sir,” said the Filipino with a grin, “I think they understood first time. It’s just that they are making too many pesos to take time for such things. Besides they think you are foolish in the head.”

Battle For Manila

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