The Apostrophe Blog
Increasingly, I may not be a wanderer. Oh I still (somewhat) tell myself that I like the idea of travel, of venturing out into the wide world to see things, learn things, experience things, adventure. Finding local places to dine or picnic along the road if we are road-tripping. Exploring the offerings of historical societies and museums and old churches and tourist traps to try to get the gist and pith of a place. Walking streets and trails and along rivers and taking in the vistas and views. Photographing the curious and quirky things I notice and see.
But my stamina for all of this was once again put to the test. This time it was for a mere 52 hours this past two days when we road-tripped over to Richland, Washington and the Manhattan Project National Historical Park site there to meet up with the 11:45 a.m. bus that would take us out to the Hanford B Reactor National Landmark where the plutonium was produced to subsequently be used in the July 16, 1945 Trinity Test (the world’s first nuclear detonation) in Alamagordo, New Mexico and then shortly after on August 8, 1945 in the devastating bomb that was dropped on Nagasaki, Japan.
I am sure I will have more to say about this whole experience after I have had more time to process what we saw and heard in a setting where something occurred that changed the world irreversibly and forever. And I am glad we made the trek; it was a singular, sobering, profound, and thought-provoking afternoon. For now, back in the Western Oregon drizzle, I am grateful for roof over head and my preferred pillow and weighted cotton blanket when I head to sleep later tonight. Even the insistent caws of the neighborhood crows right now are a music far more welcome than the cacophony that, for me, typifies running-around, blacktopped, hopped-up corridors of our American world. Maybe I am just becoming curmudgeonly and old. Or maybe the quieter, emptier times when the pandemic was most fiercely upon us are an example to me of a more comforting way to exist in this harsh, so-called modern world.
I took the above photograph at the REACH Museum in Richland, Washington. It is from an outdoor exhibit there called Boomers on Wheels, featuring a 1940s trailer that exemplified the extensive trailer camps that were in and around the Tri-Cities area during and following World War II.