When I was a kid we’d load up in my adopted dad’s pickup. Actually he’s my best friend’s dad, but I always call him my adopted dad. Glad we cleared that up. Anywho, we’d load up in his rig and head up to the hills. The summer heat would be in full effect, and we were on our way to move some cattle to range higher up in the mountains. A place where they could cool down. We did this cattle drive every summer for one of his friends.
But this post isn’t about the cattle drive, it’s about the reward at the end of the trip. To say thank you for our help, they’d take us kids to the Bonaparte Resort Cafe for hambugers and milkshakes. Our payment for a job well done.
It might not seem like much, but as a kid this post-cattle drive meal was a special treat. The memories have stuck with me all these years, but the lesson even more so. First, all of my memories revolve around food. Scary fact. Second, in my opinion, hard work deserves a reward. If we didn’t balance our yin and yang it would throw the whole universe out of whack, and we don’t want that.
So after we hauled 360 lbs. of dead leaves to the yard waste drop box this weekend, my youngest and I went to Triple XXX Root Beer Drive-In and treated ourselves— for a job well done, of course.
We hummed along to the 1950s juke box tunes while we sucked down a creamy, dreamy chocolate malt and a basket of onion rings.
It was so great to just sit down with my little Bagoo and enjoy a delightful moment together. And as I stared at the memorabilia around me, I realized that this was her first exposure to Elvis, Chubby Checker, and Ben. E. King. These are the tunes I grew up with. I remember stacking those large, round records onto my mom’s old Magnavox record player and dancing in the living room with my sister to Peppermint Twist and Rockin’ Robin. Tweet! Tweet!
You can blame this 50s vibe restaurant for my sudden plunge into nostalgia. Sitting their in that vinyl booth, I realized just how quickly we (as a society) had moved on. No more rollerskate parties, tube tops, jelly bracelets, and hypercolor shirts for me. Those decades have flown past. My kids will never know a time where you dialed a rotary phone, picked your favorite tunes on a juke box, suffered through commercials as you watched your favorite cartoons…which were only on at certain times of the week/day.
I guess my point is, the world may change around us, and our kids’ childhoods won’t look like ours, but one thing should remain the same. Kids should always cherish their childhood; look back with fondness. And most importantly, they should look back on those special moments they spent with you. In my case, that means they’ll remember mom and her triple rated treats. Oh joy!
Get out there and enjoy life a little. Revel in a shared memory with someone you love.
To help get you started, I put another dime in the juke box. I dare you to keep the memories from streaming out!