So many things about the past are best left in the past, but one thing seems to bring only wonderful memories, and much sadness at its passing.
The Velskoen Drive-In, the very last one, will very soon be no more. I wonder if there is anybody, from children, through teens and early twenty-somethings upwards, who has not been to, or at least heard about the sheer joy of the Drive-In.
In Zimbabwe, originally, payment was per car, not per person, and the record number I knew about was when my brother ‘liberated’ my father’s old VW Kombi and crammed 10 of us into that one poor old vehicle. Hmm – thinking about it, that’s not such a feat these days, with taxis etc., but I digress.
The speakers mostly worked, but it was a challenge to hang the jolly thing on the window, particularly in winter! How many people left the Drive-In with a souvenir still attached to the window? I wonder how many pubs, clubs and homes still have one as an exhibit?
From that first kiss, to the uncomfortable fumble, to the steamed-up windows, so many memories. I wonder too how many of today’s responsible adults were conceived in the back seats of cars at Drive-Ins !
Entertainment wasn’t easy with a very new baby, and the television wasn’t exactly riveting, and didn’t exist before the 70’s in South Africa, so the Drive-In was the answer. Breastfeeding didn’t offend anybody, Dad could help out with nappy-changing, for once, with nowhere to escape to, and everybody was happy.
The playground under the screen was so exciting as the children grew, while the folks put up chairs in front of the cars, and it was a relaxing and safe social evening. By that time too it was possible to tune the car radio in to hear the sound and it was a wonderful outing for the whole family.
How very very sad to see the end of what was, in fact, an institution, and which brought so much joy to so many people and has left delightful memories. RIP Velskoen.