Saturday, November 8, 2008

A bit of nostalgia

I love nostalgic things. Old time candy, 50's diners, cool old cars (especially Mustang convertibles and T-birds), and I also love things that don't ever change. There is something comforting about that - especially when it involves a good value.

I went downtown yesterday to have a lunch date with Rich, and on the way home I needed to stop for gas. You don't want to stop in downtown L.A....and I remembered a place my mom used to go to in Eagle Rock right off the 2 freeway near my old high school. It was a car wash/gas station called "Glen rock" (assumingly because it was on the border of Glendale and Eagle Rock) and they offered full-serve gas at self-serve prices. My mom ALWAYS got her gas there, I don't think she ever pumped gas in her whole life! She went out of her way to go there, as it was one of the only full-serve places left. Another thing- she always filled her car up when her tank got to half empty! I don't know why she did that, but you can know one thing: she never, never, and I mean never ran out of gas. (Neither have I, actually, but I let it dip pretty low before resorting to filling my tank at these prices nowadays!)

So, I pulled in, and guess what? It's still full-serve at the self-serve price. In fact, I paid $2.52 a gallon for my full-serve gas! It was just so cool. There were several uniformed men working the dozen or so pumps, and it's just as I remembered full serve stations so many years ago. You pull in, roll down your window, say what kind of gas you want and the question is "fill 'er up?" Then, to pay you give them your credit card and they bring it back with your slip on one of those royal blue plastic thingys with your credit card sticking up on top. Sadly, it didn't have the two-part with the carbon sheet in between (the old credit slips). But, boy, that brought back memories. Way back when Dad paid for my gas, I always got full serve - but once I had to pay for it myself, it was self-serve, baby. So it's been at least 22 years since I've pulled up to a full-serve pump.

I thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience. Watching the men pleasantly interacting with customers (mostly old people), seeing their cool uniforms - you know the ones with embroidered names on the shirts- and being brought back to a simpler, more service-oriented time. The man who helped me was so nice and cordial and clean cut. I just couldn't help smile and feel like I went back in time.

Now, if I had only had a stick of clove gum, it would have been perfect.

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