Ford Granada Wikimedia commons - Charles01

#AtMyTable: The lost art of the weekend park and view

I don’t think this happens anymore, too much happening at home, too dangerous perhaps, but who remembers the weekend park and view?

Ford Granada Wikimedia commons - Charles01

This really happened in South Africa a few decades ago. Taking out the car, filling the flask and packing the sandwiches – a stop at the local ‘keffie’ to pick up the papers and sweet for the kids and then to find the perfect spot. Under the tree, beside the main road. That was it. Conversation making, tea drinking and car watching.

How did children survive this? I cannot imagine spending a good two hours sitting in the back seat with Mom and Dad in the front and actually being – being quiet, being bored, being happy? Sweetie reward, playing with the dolls and dinky cars? Watching the trucks and cars pass by, playing games about colours or makes or what we did back then. General knowledge on the side of the road.

Not alone for sure. There were many who thought an afternoon parked by the side of the road was riveting. Before the drive home, around the circles, checking out the houses in the neighbourhood. Talking of circles, the world record for circles must have been in a neighbouring town, Welkom. And seagulls.  Billions of miles from any coastline, Welkom had

And seagulls. Billions of miles from any coastline, Welkom had world reputation for seagulls not near the sea. This was worthy of the circle drive, and park and view. We did it once, drive all the way to Welkom to park and view, daring that.

Talk about small town wonders.  We lived in our backyards and played across the road, so the excitement of going for a drive and oh, the drive-in was barely containable. That was living, talking to our parents, lucky if a friend could come along and watch the world go by. Actually looking up and out of the window.

A lost art. Just like the Weekend Park and View.