I guess I’ve been thinking a lot this week about how much things have changed in my lifetime. I’ve had conversations at lunch with other teachers ranging from the lack of discipline at the school where I’m currently teaching to the future and implanting of microchips in people. In the words of Cher, “if I could turn back time; if I could find a way” I’d certainly do it for the sake of my grandkids.
I was sitting in the car this morning outside a gas station “mini-mart”, reading the signs along the back wall CRAFT BEER – BEER – SODA – ENERGY. So weird. Compared to the picture above of a 7-Eleven that looks like the ones of my childhood, people time traveling in either direction would be bound to be confused. Those coming from the past would not understand craft beer and they would wonder how in the world a person would buy energy at a 7-Eleven.
Many people traveling backwards would be clueless about testing TV tubes. Of course, beer and ice cream have obviously stood the test of time. As has milk, though we didn’t have all the different choices that are available today. My mom would send us to the drive-through milk store when we were teenagers and tell us to get a gallon of homogenized. That’s all I ever remember getting. Now I can get soy milk, almond milk, coconut, cashew, rice, shrimp (jk), lactose free, whole, reduced-fat, low-fat, fat-free, etc.
If could go back, I’d like to visit 1969. I was ten for most of that year, and in the fifth grade. I had my favorite teacher, Miss Wilkins. I was still in my familiar, well-loved elementary school. I walked a mile barefoot to go to the 7-Eleven to buy a small Icee for 11 cents. I caught crawdads in the ditch, built forts in the woods, played Barbies with my cousin and visited Mamaw in the summer with my family. Things changed the next year. Not all bad by any means, but some things were lost that could never be regained. Yet, some things were gained, some lessons learned, some memories made that shaped me, for better or worse.