March 28 . Honolulu to Manila, crossing the International Date Line in late afternoon. After nine hours of empty ocean, Wake Island is, as V. says, "an existence philosophy in itself." We watch the sunset from the shore of the shadowless solarium, then scuff through pink coral dust to the canteen. Another plane, eastbound, has landed, meanwhile, and one of its passengers, a Swiss, introduces himself to me with: "I want to thank you for your Webern records." On Wake Island! Filipino natives gather by the gates to watch our takeoff. They are charcoal black, like figures in an underexposed negative.
Guam. Midnight. A large moon. Warm wind rustling the palm trees.
March 30 . Manila Airport, 5 AM. The I.S.'s count their baggage--ras, dva, tri, chetiry--over and over, like rosary beads. The U.S. Cultural Attaché, a Mr. Morris, accompanies us to the Manila Hotel, where a dozen eager porters pack us into our rooms. Old Manila is black and grim, except for pretty lattices and grilles, and the translucent mother-of-pearl "capiz," or clamshell windows. The shores of the Bay are lined with hundreds of "night clubs," in reality, tiny two-customer booths and simple Coca-Cola carts. They are a squalid sight