Monday, May 18, 2015
It was a Sunday evening when my grandfather came for his interview (He also told me that this is his second interview , and that his first was about his business, and it was all over in the news letters!) As he came in, we sat at the dinning room table with my mom (Danielle) cooking us something for dinner and my step dad (Dejon) was drilling a whole in the wall for what ever reason.
Me; Today is April 26th 2015, and today I am interviewing my grandfather. So what is your name?
Papa; My full name is actually Bradford Grant Cronkright but everyone calls me Pete and have been since I was in grade school, except for my grand-kids, and they call me papa.
Me; Okay, so what brings you here today?
Papa; What brings me here today? My truck(laughing). Actually, this was a very important thing to me that I... because I am being interviewed by my grand-daughter I thought that it was very important for me to be here and I'm sorry I couldn't make it sooner.
Me; Thank you, So what was it like when you were my age?
Papa; And you are?
Me; 12 almost 13
Papa; When I was 12 i got my first horse and I kind of did a rodeo circus locally, then my horse died so I bought a Harley Davidson . I've been on a steel horse ever since.
Me; And a Harley Davidson is?
Papa; Harley Davidson is a motorcycle, the 1950 pan head and it use to be a police bike. My mother didn't know I had it so I had to hide it.
Me; Did she ever find out?
Me; Okay then.
Papa; I've been afraid of her since I was born.
Me; So I know that you have your own motorcycle shop for building and repairing motorcycles, so what made you decide to do that for a living?
Papa; I was actually working for the state of California and I was getting ready to retire and I needed something to do when I retired and it seem how much my passion was for building Harley Davidson's, I decided to start my own shop and it called "Old Skool Motorcycle Shop" because that's what I mostly do is older motorcycles. Since I've opened and I've been open so 10 years now, it seems to be turning up well.
Me; I know you told me a bunch of stories about the army so what was it like?
Papa; The army was kind of intimidating at first because military brings you down from who you think you are to what they want you to be. Complaint, using group efforts for single causes, and once you develop that then they put you on a bus, plane, or whatever and send you to a war zone , back when I was in the military and then you do your time then get out and hope your still alive.
Me; How would you go into the military?
Papa; When I was in the army I had a draft system, well you didn't have a choice. They sent you a letter and said your up!
Me; Was it frightening or how did you feel.
Papa; In the military in the United States going through training, it was a bit intimidating at times until you got the concept. I think the hardest part was going over seas and then you realized that you weren't coming home again. Where you able to perform your duties as required by the military and then you watched your back until you hit soil again.
Me; What generation do you thinking better, mine or yours?
Papa; Actually I can deal with any of the generations because I am the same age as whoever I'm with so I can relate but when I was raised there was a three digits phone number, it was a party line and you used your phone once a week not every 10 minutes as the meaning for facebook, tweeter, text message, etc. If you were late, you were in trouble. If the street lights come on then you were in trouble because it was too late but we didn't have computers and we only had black and white T.Vs . That's the way I grew up. We learned to except it and it was plenty.
Me; How was it like in school?
Papa; School was interesting, it's like you go through school all the way up until high school you kinda personality bucking the system thinking that everything you learned was really kind of non-sense. You left that or I felt that common sense and experience was more important than learning history. When all actuality as I grew older, history is the way to learn because if you learn by other actions, mistakes , accomplishments that your just that much further ahead. I didn't really get into school until I got out of service and went back to college and learning was a whole different aspect. At that point I wish that I had fet the same way about learning when I was in highschool. I think I would've learned a lot more if I did.
Me; How did the teachers act?
Papa; They were very strict, corporal punishment was in effect at that time so if you were out of line n you got a spanking or pushed against the wall many times. Slapped with rulers across the hand crossed, back, smack in the head so it looks like beard intimidated opposed to what they have now where you're trying to talk to a person and calm them down and relate to their level so you can get them to crop rate with the class. when I was in school they slap you on the head and said straight out, but which is better actually I thought somewhere in between.
Me; I want to thank you for coming and doing interview.
Papa; It was my pleasure.
Me; By the way how old are you?
Papa;66-67 but act like I'm 21 and I have a sense of humor which gets me out of a lot of trouble sometimes because I am very bad at hearing and hearing things and respond and its nothing what was said.
Me; OK well thank you very much.
Papa; Your welcome.