There were times he asked me to go and others when I begged for him to take me as all kids do so often.Walking next to him, I was quite small but could always see him looking out for me as we got ready to cross the busy street.
He would show me how he knew the light was about to change and we could walk safely to the other side. I remember thinking he had magic powers when he used to tell me exactly when it would change to WALK before sharing all of that.
A few more steps after the street around the block from our apartment in Queens, New York and we entered the candy store.
Upon entering, hellos were said to the guys who worked behind the counter. Most of them were there forever and had watched all of us neighborhood kids grow up. They also knew our parents so we were very familiar faces. This was part of everyday life in the 1980’s.
My dad grabbed a newspaper as we walked to the stools to sit. It was our time. Smiling, we would figure out what special drink we were going to have on that outing.
Usually, it was a vanilla malted. It came in that old fashioned tin looking cup that you would see in the old fashioned soda shops. He would pour out some for me and then fill up his own glass. Dad would skim through the paper and I sat drinking my shake doing the people watching thing.
Sometimes, he would order egg creams for us.
NOOOOOOO eggs in that for those of you who don’t know. This is a special drink that originated out of Brooklyn, New York. Years later, my dad took the time to teach me how to make one at home. You just pour the vanilla syrup up to a certain point (or chocolate syrup if you were like one of my best friends and preferred it that way) and add just a little milk. Finally, pour in seltzer until it reaches the top while stirring quickly with a skinny metal spoon. Dad would taste it and say you really need the pressure of the soda fountain to get it right but it was still pretty good. Those instructions would come in handy when I was pregnant with my second child, living in NC, and only wanted egg creams. Chocolate at that. Go figure.
You get to a certain age and one starts to feel nostalgic about these kind of memories.
TeAmo has long since closed. My dad and I don’t have a go to for malteds anymore because as most of us know, they don’t make them like they used to.
Nothing seems to be made quite like it used to. With that sentence, I realize how much I have truly aged.
My dad and I still get our bonding moments. He is the kind of dad who gives meaning to the word, “pal”.
When my husband tells me he is taking our daughter out for different errands and to get lunch, I don’t jump up to join them.
I know how special those moments are.
I hope one day, she does too.
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What moments make you nostalgic?
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