Farewell to Manzanar Part I, Chapter 4
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Part I, Chapter 4
A Common Master Plan
- Here's what camp life is like: bare floors, blankets for walls, a lone bare bulb for lighting, and absolutely no privacy.
- The truth? Camp wasn't ready for people to be moved in. Stay classy, United States government.
- Barracks are still being built; campers had not packed for the cold winds; people have continual diarrhea from eating spoiled food…
- It's pure chaos at pretty much every turn, and it takes several months for things to settle down.
- But before things settle down, there are things like the women's bathroom stalls to contend with.
- Think: bad pipes and lots of poop. Not a good combination.
- Oh—and the stalls don't have any privacy.
- The first time they go to the bathroom, Jeanne's mother lucks out because an old woman loans her a cardboard box as a privacy screen.
- Adult Jeanne tells us that her mother is like most Japanese people: on one hand, they're willing to suck it up in order to be cooperative; but on the other hand, they really need their privacy (especially in crowded, small places).
- That's why living in the camp is constantly like "an open insult to that other, private self" (19).
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