From the South China Morning Post this week in 1953 While headlines dwelt on the on/off armistice in the Korean war, the situation in Indochina was heating up. French paratroopers landed in the Langson area of Vietnam, taking the local communist rebel base by surprise. The French found 5,000 tonnes of supplies delivered by the Chinese. In 12 hours the paratroopers destroyed everything that could not be carried away, before beginning a forced march through the jungle. They linked up 48 hours later, deep into rebel-held territory, with a relief column sent out from the Hanoi area. French casualties were few, it was reported. Back in Hong Kong, the focus was, as ever, on comings and goings. Along with the arrivals and departures from Gloucester Hotel were schoolchildren returning from English boarding schools for their summer holidays. This week's batch of 10 arriving on a BOAC flight from London included Bryan Bliss, 12, son of Mrs P. Bliss of Gilman and Co. The arrival of a batch of scantily clad models was also arousing interest. The six Sydney girls were coming to display Australian-made clothing for designer Beaufort Howe on a Far Eastern tour. Audiences could look forward to the spectacle of him draping a swimsuit clad girl in an evening gown in two minutes, using only a few yards of fabric and a few pins. It was little wonder that more men were getting ulcers. 'He feels this is because women are now competing with him professionally,' said a Cornell University professor. 'But when women stayed home and had babies, man's position in society was more secure and he was the real head of his household.' On the other hand, he added, more women had ulcers now than when they stayed home and let their husbands make the decisions. Singapore was in urgent need of a professor to teach dental students how to make false teeth. The University of Malaya was advertising internationally and offering a monthly salary of US$900 for the Prosthetic Chair of Dentistry. If Singaporeans had toothache there was little chance of any distractions. The government ruled out a state-run television service as too expensive and, what's more, colonial secretary W.L. Blythe added, any private-sector TV station was liable to be taken over by the government later. Two private companies applied for television licences the previous year, but were turned down. The jobseeker lists were several columns long and, as usual, featured scores of cookboys with wash amahs seeking positions in European households. 'Shanghai cookboy with wash baby amah speaking excellent English with many years' experience in European cooking, clean and honest'' was a top-quality prospect. Cleanliness was often mentioned as an attribute, as in 'Coolie boy, Fa-wong, able to cook, English-speaking, clean, hardworking with references'. But then the spectre of disease was never far away, with tuberculosis and typhoid on the increase. One shipment of buffaloes imported from Siam for slaughter for fresh meat in Hong Kong was less welcome, bringing with it foot-and-mouth disease. Anyone who had passed through the Kennedy Town government quarantine station was advised to give local farms a wide berth.