Manuscripts/Mixed Material Interview with Terrence George Leonhardy
LEONHARDY: No. I got his maid and there was a guy upstairs that worked in the consulate from the Navy Department. He was my roommate and I had another one upstairs who was in the consulate so we'd pool our food and eat together, and so forth, so I just fell into that very luckily. But anyway, getting back to the accounts, finally he was assigned to Manta, Ecuador so the Consul took it over and he wasn't any better than Henry, and then finally he came into me one day and he says, “I noticed from your curriculum that you taught accounting.” And I said, “Yes.” He says, “I'd like you to take over the accounts.” This was in addition to what I was already doing. And so it was a pretty heavy workload. And then, I was there about a year when I picked up an amoebae and in those days, local medics were really not worthwhile but there were a couple of German refugees, man and wife, that examined me, took no tests at all, they just looked in my eyes and interviewed me separately and they said, “Well, you've got an amoebae.” So they put me on umpteen injections. Some years later I was treated for the same thing up in Bethesda Naval Hospital and took umpteen and they wouldn't even let me out of bed, it's so hard on your heart and everything. But I went to work every day. But there wasn't much to do in Barranquilla. First of all, you didn't have much time to do anything anyway. You'd get home exhausted from work.
Q: I wonder if you could tell me a bit about Barranquilla. What it was doing and what it was like at the time - and also a bit about Colombia at this time. We're talking about... You were in Barranquilla from when to when?
LEONHARDY: From '42 to '45. Two major ports on the Caribbean, one was Cartagena and the other was Barranquilla - the major port being Barranquilla. Everything that went into Barranquilla by boat went up thMagdalena River. Anything that went into the interior went up the Magdalena River, and most of it went up by these paddle-wheelers although some of it was carried up by air. It was, you know, a busy port and that's where, of course, the Clipper started.
Q: We're talking about the Pan American Clipper ship. It was a flying boat by Sikorsky.
LEONHARDY: Exactly. Four props on it, I believe. Anyway, we had a lot of visa work there because people would come in to Barranquilla to go to the States. That was the place they took off. There was no direct flight from Bogota or any other city at that time to the States.
Q: Bogota was really kind of out of it, wasn't it?