Grandfather's Bicycle

Relationship: Child of im/migrant
The last bicycle my grandfather owned.
The last bicycle my grandfather owned.

 This is my grandfather’s bicycle, the last one he owned. To some it may be just a rusty old bicycle that they can find at the flea market for less than twenty dollars or some might even throw it in the trash and buy a newer, lighter, faster bike. To myself and my family it is a testament of the hard work my grandfather put in to support us. 

What made life and opportunity difficult for my grandparents in Mexico was the fact that the government was inhibiting their ability to open a taco shop by not granting them the necessary permits. In 1972 when my grandfather, grandmother, and dad who was only two years old migrated to America, they brought with them one of my grandfather’s bicycle as a necessity. My great aunt was already in America and business opportunity was much stronger than in Mexico contributing to the pull factors towards America, similar to the pull factors of 1910-1930. 

Once in America, my grandfather rode his bike down the San Gabriel River Trail ne El Monte, CA and brought my dad with him as he grew older. Once I was born I was then being towed by my dad on the same trail and would go all three of us to spend time together and get exercise. Most recently, my dad rode 50 miles on his new road bike in Rosarito, MX on May 5, 2019. Next year I plan to ride in the same race with my dad. We all love bicycling and keep my grandfather’s bike to maintain that tradition and his memory. 

Place(s): Mexico
Year: 1972

– Nathan Rodriguez

Relationship:  Child of im/migrant Child of im/migrant