Monday, April 25, 2011

Meet the Cast Monday #16: Gran (Part II)

Just in case you missed my explaination of how I have these little gems of Q&A with my grandma, click here! And....if you missed Part I of the interview, click here.

You went to college. Where did you go and what did you major in?

I went to New Mexico State, and I majored in Home Economics.

Did you have a job to help you pay for college?
Everybody worked that I knew, going to school and I worked at the Canteen, I worked at the telephone office, and sometimes in the Dean of Student’s office. You wanted to get as many hours as you could. And did I mention you were paid 25 cents an hour and that was the going rate all over campus.

Do you have any advice for someone who is about to graduate and go to college? Well I hope they don’t have to work as hard as I did, but they need to do some so they appreciate it. I was the first one in my family to go to college, so that was a big thing in my country. {I had forgotten her saying this, but I think this explains why she would always slip me a $20 bill when I was home for school before I hit the road again!}

In your lifetime, what has been the most significant world event that you lived through?
I guess it was World War II, and also the Korean War. But World War II mainly.

How did the war affect you? Well, they took all the boys out of college there, and then they changed the schedule and we were on a fast pace and you couldn’t get hours you wanted and the subjects you wanted, it was just different all together then.

So I decided to go work in a defense job and help with the war effort I thought. So the girl that I roomed with, who was from Tatum, went with me. And I had a brother out there, working in the ship yards. For health reasons, they wouldn’t take him in the service, so he kinda got us squared away and we found jobs and I worked as an airplane mechanic and a lot of women in that shame shop. And some men who were considered 4F so they weren’t eligible to go to the service so they had jobs there also. And I worked on airplane generators and what’s that other little motor? Alternators. And that was a different life. I’ve thought about it many times, and I’ve wondered how we really did win that war with so many people that were just really kinda goofing off on the job.

But I learned a lot and I wouldn’t take anything for that experience. {Sound familiar? Remember my experience in San Francisco?} And all the neighbors at Tatum said I’d never go back to college, but I knew I would. And when my year was up out there in Oakland, California, I returned and went back to New Mexico State. {Trust me people, if there was anyone in the world who would prove you wrong, it was Gran.}
I know that you were working on airplanes that your brothers might have flown. Did they give you a hard time about that?

They really did. They didn’t want anything to do with an airplane that I might have worked on, but those airplanes, before they went up again, they were checked by so many special people that had been in the business for years, and so they didn’t really need to worry about that.

You said that three of your brothers had gone to fight in the war, and all three came back alive?
And that was pretty odd for a family to have all of their children come back alive wasn’t it?

Yes, but my cousins right south, three miles south, they had I believe it was 4 or 5 in there at one time and they had a write up in the Lovington Leader, this was during the war, that they had this one family had served more than any other county in the state, I believe. By that I mean that the four of five brothers were were the only family with that many in the service.

Stay a few months we'll continue meeting Gran and learn about her favorite trips, her teaching career, her thoughts on ranching, the most significant impact on her life, her happiest moment, and her advice for living a good life!

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