Uncle Pete the storyteller

10 03 2014

Today I want to applaud and give a shout out to DH, or my Darling Husband as he is known here, Papa to his granddaughters in Italy, and Uncle Pete to others. Something very special occurred on Friday during his day at the Bishop Museum in Honolulu where he has been a volunteer docent for about eight years.

Just when he wondered how effective he was with school children, an age group he has only recently addressed in his role as a docent, the Museum’s education staff passed him some mail. “Here.”

He phoned me at the studio at the end of the day with excitement in his voice, “What do you want for dinner? I want to celebrate! Check out my Facebook page.” I read:

A couple weeks ago we gave an hour docent tour to a group of 4th graders from Iolani School. Today I share this book of letters addressed to Uncle Pete, not only giving thanks but validating that these folks listened and reflect. A very humbling and wonderful gift. Mahalo kids from Iolani.

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You may click on the photo to enlarge the letter from Josh.

Uncle Pete with the book of thank you notes from Iolani School fourth graders

Uncle Pete in front of Hawaiian Hall at the Bishop Museum with the book of thank you notes from Iolani School fourth graders (Photo by Taueva Fa’otusia)

Of course he was tickled. I’ve always thought being a docent is perfect for Pete. He likes to talk a lot, and he likes history, particularly Hawaiian history. At home, his family just rolls their eyes. In fact, the baby would move her lips with her fingers for that rude sound when she was tired of her Papa talking so much!

But at the Museum, Uncle Pete has a new audience every time. The average length of a docent tour is 25 minutes. He really has to convey the facts and hit his marks. No editorializing! Do you really want to know the history of Hawai‘i in just ten minutes? Uncle Pete can tell you. A whole hour with the fourth graders? He must really have been in his element and enjoyed every minute.

After reading the congratulatory comments from friends on the Facebook post, I have to agree Pete is a gifted storyteller, and the thanks is well deserved. I am so glad his talent and generosity were recognized in this way.

Copyright 2014 Rebekah Luke
Uncle Pete Krape’s regular docent tours at the Bishop Museum are on Friday afternoon in Hawaiian Hall.
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