Remember Back When
by Thomas R. McKinnis
October 1, 1996
There comes a stage in everyone's life when they like to
reference everything to when they were younger. I remember my
grandparents making mention of times when they were younger. I
suppose it just comes with age. I find myself now arriving at
this crossroads in my life. Many have a "midlife" crisis and
fight the feelings by trying to draw back physically what has
seemingly slipped away. Others just go with the flow and do what
I am doing - "Remember(ing) Back When ..."
I remember back when, as a small child, my dad took me along to
look at a 1955 Chevy station wagon. As a small child, I was so
caught up in the amount of space available to crawl around inside
the vehicle. I was just barely nine, but I could see visions of
how wonderful it was going to be to have such a "fine" vehicle.
My dad had always had trucks, this would be our "first" car that I
could remember. I know it must have been difficult for my dad to
"negotiate" with the dealer, while a nine year old kid hung around
waiting to see if he would get to soon ride home in the "back."
As luck would have it, dad purchased the car. I remember
crawling over the back seat and sitting perched on the spare tire
lying in the cargo area. I was in "hog heaven" ..... until
Let me preface this by giving you a little historical weather
and geographical data: It was a dry, DRY, hot, HOT, summer day in
July. We lived on a dirt and gravel road (more dirt than gravel).
We lived six miles from any paved road. It goes without
mentioning the station wagon wasn't equipped with factory
air-conditioning. We had been using the "2/60" (two windows down
at 60 miles per hour) air-conditioning method that most people
used at this time until we got to the gravel road.
The moment we hit the gravel (remember, it's mostly dirt), we
were inundated with dust. By the time we reached home, not only
could you write your name on any surface inside the car, the
combination of dust and sweat made us all look more like
gingerbread men than humans. We only kept the station wagon five
years, dad was glad when it was gone - he got a "new" truck to
Ever wonder why you don't see many station wagons anymore? Now
they call them by another name - LUV's (Luxury Utility Vehicles),
SUV's (Sport Utility Vehicles), and "Mini" Vans. I don't care
what they call them - I still remember the dust. I drive a truck!