My daughter-in-law and I were enjoying a lake breeze and inhaling the aroma of funnel cakes as we waited on a few other members of the family. The destination… a Midwestern amusement park. The event… the first time in over a year that the family have all been together in one place.
We talked about coming to this same amusement park with our own parents… what has changed and what remains the same. The owners have managed to upgrade a great deal while keeping the nostalgia intact. Of course, for me the visits with my mother and father were in the late 1950s and early 1960s before my father passed away. Her childhood visits were not all that long ago.
I shared with her memories of taking my own children to that amusement park. Stories of how we had to walk with her future husband (then a two-year old) with one of those kiddie leashes to keep him from jumping into the water and how the four of us always looked forward to lunch at the restaurant overlooking the lake.
It doesn’t seem like it was all that long ago and now I was taking pictures of my grandchildren riding the very same kiddie boats, helicopters, and Merry-Go-Round of previous generations while much of the rest of the family went from one roller coaster ride to another (I am green just thinking of it).
At one point, I left the others and sat on a bench overlooking the boardwalk and the lake… thinking of previous visits and how years pass so quickly. The reminder again that the opportunities for our children’s “good old days” can pass with no memories made of wonderful family times together.