© Art Mills Photos
Getting ready for my trip to Manzanar… I’m filled with anticipation as I get ready to take the next step on my journey. This will be my third trip to Manzanar, but my first on this Journey of Conscience. The first two trips crystallized the notion that I need to do this. It is a long drive from home, nine to ten hours depending upon the number of stops along the way. I’ll drive across the Cascades, down past Reno, and south along Hwy 395 on the east side of the Sierras. The trip will take me over eight mountain passes, past two beautiful lakes and one reservoir, and through countless plant and wildlife communities. Other than Reno and Carson City, the towns along the way are small, some just hamlets. Like all of the other WRA Camps, Manzanar was situated for isolation from the rest of the population.
You will see from my upcoming photos that Manzanar is a place of stark beauty. The wildness and beauty of the setting helps me remember that Manzanar was also a place of great contrasts; a place where the human experiences were as wide and varied as the thousands of people who were brought there.
There is still much work to do, material to read, and maps of the camp to peruse. Hopefully, I will be able to talk with people who lived in Manzanar as children. Always, my hope is to capture, through direct conversation and through reading and watching recorded video interviews, the feelings and insights of Americans who lived in the camps. Part of my journey is to hear and to share their narrative.
Next Steps on the Journey… In 17 days, I set out for Manzanar, driving in my GMC.
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Grace and peace,