Thursday, October 11, 2018

High Sierra: Highway 395--Independence, Manzanar National Historic Site


Manzanar National Historic Site  5001 Hwy. 395, (760) 878-2194.  Visitor Center open daily 9-4:30; site open daily dawn-dusk.  Free.

Visitor Center at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California
Visitor Center at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California

The original inhabitants of this desolate, 1-square-mile spot that was once home to apple orchards (“manzanar” means apple) were Paiute Indians, who were massacred and forced out.  Following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1942, the area became one of 10 bleak U.S. internment camps that were used to detain 11,000 Japanese Americans.  They were considered a potential threat to the nation and were held against their will beginning in March of 1942.  Most camp inhabitants here were from San Pedro, California and Bainbridge Island, Washington.
  When the Manzanar War Relocation Center closed after World War II in 1945, most of the buildings were either moved elsewhere or dismantled and sold as scrap.  The prisoners left in November of 1945 and  were given just $25 and a bus ticket to wherever they wanted to go.  Over the years, this site has become a peaceful, beautiful spot, with sagebrush and trees and the Sierra peaks visible in the distance.
  The Visitor Center, which opened in 2004, was originally built by internees in 1944 as a high school auditorium.  Now it is home to state-of-the-art exhibits that are thoughtful and enlightening as well as disturbing.  Begin your visit with a viewing of the excellent documentary movie “Remembering Manzanar,”  which gives a voice to the 11,000 people who endured incarceration here, then browse the museum, and move on to the out buildings--barracks, women’s latrine, and mess hall--which because they were rebuilt to code were reconstructed better than they were originally built.  A self-guided tour weaves through these buildings, providing plenty of food for thought.

U.S. flag flies at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California
U.S. flag flies at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California


site map at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California
site map at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California


ranger at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California
ranger at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California


overview of reconstructed buildings at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California
overview of reconstructed buildings at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California


inside barracks at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California
inside barracks at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California


exterior of women's latrine at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California
exterior of women's latrine at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California


view from women's latrine at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California
view from women's latrine at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California


showers in women's latrine at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California
showers in women's latrine at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California


toilets in women's latrine at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California
toilets in women's latrine at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California


exterior of mess hall at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California
exterior of mess hall at Manzanar National Historic Site in Independence, California



Tuesday, October 9, 2018

80 North: Berkeley, Taste of the Himalayas


Taste of the Himalayas  1700 Shattuck Ave./Virginia St., Gourmet Ghetto, (510) 849-4983.  L-D daily; $$.

exterior of Taste of the Himalayas in Berkeley, California
exterior of Taste of the Himalayas in Berkeley, California


lunch specials at Taste of the Himalayas in Berkeley, California
lunch specials at Taste of the Himalayas in Berkeley, California


Featuring a menu of Nepalese, Tibetan, and Indian dishes, this atmospheric restaurant features a large open dining room decorated with hand-painted murals and furnished with elaborately carved wood chairs and accents.

dining room at Taste of the Himalayas in Berkeley, California
dining room at Taste of the Himalayas in Berkeley, California


statue at Taste of the Himalayas in Berkeley, California
statue at Taste of the Himalayas in Berkeley, California


You’ll want to try the momos and Nepalese-spiced lamb curries in particular.  Here for lunch, I recently tried the tandoor salmon special but found it disappointing in that it was still cold in the center and the outside didn’t have the charred, crispiness that I expected.  It was only ok, although the charred onions on the side almost made up for it.  The special included a lovely lentil soup and a very good crispy-yet-soft nan.  My dining partner ordered an excellent chicken birayani.  Between us, we had enough leftovers for another lunch at home.  The menu offers a decent selection of vegetarian items.  Spicing is mild, so ask for additional heat if that is what you like.

tandoor salmon at Taste of the Himalayas in Berkeley, California
tandoor salmon at Taste of the Himalayas in Berkeley, California


lentil soup at Taste of the Himalayas in Berkeley, California
lentil soup at Taste of the Himalayas in Berkeley, California


chicken birayani at Taste of the Himalayas in Berkeley, California
chicken birayani at Taste of the Himalayas in Berkeley, California
Taste of the Himalayas Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


More things to do in Berkeley. 

Way more thing to do in Berkeley. 

More ideas for exploring Northern California. 

images ©2018 Carole Terwilliger Meyers