There is something fishy about this old photograph. Yeah, it has a “Leave it to Beaver” quality about it, a quaint family photo from the 1950’s, but there is something not right about it. I”m not saying the photo is a fake, it’s genuine all right: taken in 1957, it’s definitely my family in front of my boyhood home. My Dad, all Clark Griswold-like, standing outside the 1954 pastel green Ford Fairlane, as if he just opened the door for my Mom, and both of them in snappy, trendy hats. My brother in the backseat near the window, he had “dibs” on it, and me in the background. My sister must have taken this picture. Something’s just not right, but I can’t put my finger on it.
Check out the home-made car-top carrier my Dad made. Suit cases and ice chest went in the trunk, but the car-top carrier held the camping gear: white-gas cook stove, sleeping bags, air mattresses, and bicycle pump. Everything was kept dry by the tarp covering the top, which was also used to make a lean-to between two trees for “shelter”. My brother and I slept in the car, while the real pioneers, Dad, Mom and big sis, slept under the lean-to tarp. (“Nothin’ but the best, Clark.” says cousin Eddie)
All of the visual things of the photograph are real, but there is one thing that just doesn’t fit. I’ve got it! The sun is up, its daylight and we’re still in the driveway. How can that be? We always left at Oh Dark Thirty, with the three kids crammed in the back seat, all in restless slumber trying not to look like a litter of puppies. This couldn’t possibly be the actual departure of our 1957 summer vacation captured on film. But, on the other hand, maybe Dad made an exception for this one time since it was our first real summer vacation trip, and we left after the sun was up so he could document this major event. Too bad I can’t even remember where we went that year.
Thought for the Day: The irony of life is that by the time you are old enough to know your way around, you’re not going anywhere. Anonymous