Saturday, August 16, 2008

Memories of Our Cruises.....


This picture is similar to the first car I owned, back in 1961. A 1957 Ford Custom, 2 dr. Sedan. My dad got it used for me and I made monthly payments to him to pay him back, plus paid for my own insurance. Price of vehicle was $600. Memories.....priceless.

I was fortunate enough to experience some of my memorable teenage years during 1958 through 1962. It was a wonderful time and although it may bring unhappy memories to some (Vietnam War era), for a lot of us, it was a time like no other. Cruising was all the thing back then. Shiny cars, no cares and great music, cruising along Woodward Avenue between our burb and the next, ..….where all the kids went, ending at the most popular local drive-in restaurant for a 5x5 (big hamburger) and a coke.

One weekend in August a bunch of years ago, some car enthusiasts got together and decided it would be fun to make “the old run”, cruising the highway again….and even do it in some vintage cars. Even though the drive-in is no longer in business, the memories hang in the air. The idea caught on. And now this event has gone from a small one, to one known world-wide. The air is filled with the music of the late 50’s through the 70’s. A lot of people dress just like we dressed back then. For about two weeks prior the event, you can see the cars from that era being driven around town, so shiny they hurt your eyes. The local radio stations have hopped on the band wagon and play all the music from those years we loved so much. At any given moment, you can turn on your radio, close your eyes and travel back in time 40 years or more. Yesterday I was behind a fine looking ’56 Chevy on the way home from work, listening to the Beach Boys.

This weekend is going to be a nice one, even though it won’t be a typically blazing hot August day. The temp should top out at a perfect 80, and the sky is the purest blue and the sun is bright and inviting. I always feel badly for the participants who often trailer their vehicles across country and then have to put up with rain, which has happened frequently. But not this year!

I don’t personally attend anymore; my knee has decided that for me. But I still enjoy the event by watching some of it on TV and listening to all those wonderful songs. I remember driving to work in my senior year, listening to the strains of “Runaround Sue” and “The Wanderer”; I hear them again and my mind travels back….to a simpler time. True, no cell phones, no computers, no video games but we often left our homes unlocked and the keys in the ignition of the family car sitting in the driveway. All of you my age know what I’m talking about. I’m glad I was blessed enough to experience it.

So, if you want, you can check out Dream Cruise and get a glimpse into the past. I often wonder exactly what today’s teen thinks of all this. Probably about the same way I used to feel when my mom talked about the “Big Band Era”, and dancing “The Charleston”.

14 comments:

Gypsy said...

What a fun thing to do and what a shame you can no longer enjoy it in person. My memories like that come from the late 70's and I often think about those times.

I caught up on your older posts that I missed and I'm sorry to read about what happened with your son. I hope you are feeling a bit better now. Big hugs to you Val. xx

simonsays said...

What a totally wonderful idea! I love the music and the cars...it really is too bad that you can't participate anymore...

I'm happy to see that you posted again, I have missed you. I hope things in your world have become oh-so-much easier...

Hugs good friend.

:)

ac said...

Very cool! I love this!

... goes away humming the wonderer...

Mary said...

It's my era and I love it!! Wish I could participate! Thanks for bringing it all to the present. I drove a pink and black T-bird with a little porthole window on the side. It had a pink interior. Man on man, was I ever one cool chick - at least I thought so.

happyone said...

I'm a bit younger but we did the cruise thing too. Our place was down the main road in Ridgewood, NJ.
I didn't have my own car but borrowed my dad's 65 bonneville convertible.

SOUL: said...

chester -- ave? blvd??? whatever it was-- in Bakersfield , California.
it was cool as hell for me-- and i was there as the age of "cruising" as we all knew it.. became illegal. and it really really sucked.
cops would hide in certain places of choice, and if they noticed the same car pass them a third time, they would stop them , and ticket them.. and as most were young, new drivers-- and --- or-- most likely drinking, or under the influence of "something"-- it didn't take long for chester to become a dead zone.

next were the drive in movies-- POOF --- gone.

then skating rinks-- there are a few here and there-- but not like back then.

and guess what---
everyone sits back and stupidly wonders why kids these days get in so much trouble.
well... i wonder why--
wth is there for them to do-- or where can they go???
a teenager can hang at the mall for only "so long"-- a movie lasts at most a couple hours... then what??
they just gave a new name to the bored and agitated teen
they call it ADHD
the mystery illness of 90 percent of our young people today--

why don't "they"-- whoever "they" may be--
try giving "them" something" to friggin do??
cuz everyone knows they don't want to spend their time at home with the evil spawn that is their parents.


holy crap charlotte---
sorry-- perhaps i shoulda blogged this in my own box???
OOPSY-
DAZEY???
:)) happy monday--
is there such a thing?


btw-- i did love your song-- and your post-- obviously it brought back memories for me too-- and a bit of a "political standpoint?"
would that be the phrase i'm lookin for?
or totally wrong?
social standpoint?
viewpoint?
whatever--
i really don't think cruisin should be illegal. that's just ridiculous.

ok-- i'm leavin.. :))

Brad said...

I feel lucky that 'cruising' was still going on when I was in highschool. We had "The Renton Loop" kids came from miles around on friday & saturday night. Sadly it doesn't happen for the kids today. I think thier all at home making 'friends' on Facebook - Bleh!

Bear Naked said...

Val
Thanks so much for sharing your memories of cruising in the 50's and 60's.
It really was a great time in our lives wasn't it?
And the music brings a smile to my face.
We did have the BEST music didn't we?

Bear((( )))

Kelly Jene said...

That song was a great pick for the post. Brings back memories of cruising around town with my parents.

Love ya!

SOUL: said...

just sayin hello charlotte---
and--goo-bye

CRUSTYBEEF said...

I really liked this balance...car cruises with old classics are a blast to see!!

Now pardon me for moving off of the post but I've got to say I love your virtual cat maukie!
He reminds me of my old cat Bailey-black with white just like him and perfect green eyes.

what's the meaning behind Maukie?

Elizabeth :)

SOUL: said...

howdy charlotte---

you made me scared of my dawgie. :((
she wouldn't bite me on purpose tho-- but owch-- if she did - it would not be good.
but you're right-- she isn't goin anywhere. she's a good girl.. just a little more intimidating than the others.

how's your day?
hope it's good.

ordinaryjanet said...

That sounds like fun! It's nice to relive happy memories of the past.

Cheryl said...

What great memories you have. It's sad that getting older stops us from enjoying the things of our youth, ie..the knee. You brought it to life for us through this memoir.