Distant Deliveries

The awkward part about the location of our new apartment is that we have yet to find a pizza place that will deliver to the address. I’m not really certain as to why…we’re walking distance away from streets of local downtown businesses, but our street is off the magic grid of pizza delivery for our city.

In any case, Karen decided that tonight was a pizza night, and she called me on my way home from class, because the only option is carryout. So, I detoured to the appropriate pizza location and went inside to claim our dinner.

To be greeted by nostalgia.

I grew up in a rural area, and went to school in a town about 20 minutes away. My mother did all of the week’s shopping on Fridays: groceries, household supplies, whatever was necessary was all purchased in the weekly Friday excursion. She made this a special treat for me at the end of the week, as well, by picking me up from school on Friday afternoons about halfway through said shopping excursion, thus eliminating one of my one-hour bus rides for the week. And, we always managed to have fun. Frequently, we took a pizza home on Friday afternoons, arriving just in time as my father got home from work. We always ordered from the same place (my parents are to this day creatures of routine), and it was always carryout, because there was certainly no delivery in the area in which we lived.

So, many Friday afternoons were spent waiting in the restaurant for the pizza to be prepared. Those sorts of routine sounds, sights and smells have a way of making a mark on a child’s memory, and these certainly did (I was later offered a summer job at that same restaurant, and I’m so glad that I already had one and turned it down, because it would have ruined the nostalgia to see such a thing up close).

Fast forward to me leaving for college. There were multiple pizza deliveries within minutes of campus in that much larger city, all of which made a lucrative business of delivering to one’s dorm room. So, delivery ruled. And, it has ever since. Karen and I have always been quite used to ordering delivery on evenings when we don’t feel like cooking.

I think that, in becoming so accustomed to deliveries, that I’ve lost something of the memory that I once had. Standing in that pizza restaurant tonight, listening to the sounds and smelling the scents, listening to a grandmother help her grandchildren in choosing their order behind me, I was transported back momentarily to those Friday afternoons of my childhood.

My childhood was far from perfect, but it had its moments.

I know that we’ll make memories like this with and for our daughter, and I know that they may very well be the unintentional ones…like the pizza restaurant for me…that make some of the biggest impressions. Perhaps one day she’ll write about what they were and I’ll get to enjoy reliving them. In any case, this is yet another moment when I’m learning to not let convenience overpower an appreciation for the goodness of life when it was just a bit slower.

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