Lauren is the host of Throwback Thursday this week and her topic for discussion is
Think back to where you liked to hang out when you were young. Your stomping grounds might have been determined by your ability to get to a variety of locations. It’s time to pull on those tangled memory strings and sort out some thoughts.https://lssattitudeofgratitude.wordpress.com/2022/07/14/throwback-thursday-47-hanging-out/
- Did you spend more time hanging out at friend’s houses or away from the eyes and ears of parents?
- If you stayed home, how did you spend your time?
- Did you have a favorite eatery?
- Did you go to the mall with friends?
- Did choose to socialize at bowling alleys, arcades, or roller rinks?
- Did you go miniature golfing or do another outside activity?
- Did you hang around after school killing time? What did you do?
- Did your parents typically know where you were?
- Did you prefer to “hang” with friends or family members?
- Was it “cool” to be seen hanging out at any particular place?
- Was there a place you wanted to hang out, but weren’t allowed to?
I’m going to free write my recollections today because most of the above questions are about things I didn’t really do.
Until I was about twelve my wanderings were confined to my immediate neighbourhood. I didn’t really hang out with friends after school and I certainly didn’t want to hang out at the school. As soon as the bell rang I was off home back to my own space. I played with Naomi if she wasn’t off with her own friends and sometimes I hung out with my slightly older cousin but really I was quite happy on my own. Sometimes I went to the library which I was allowed to do by myself or to a nearby pine plantation to look for pine cones. Sometimes I’d take Felix, our dog. From age 11 I had a room of my own and I would hang out in there.
Naturally high school meant I could spread my wings a bit further. I was allowed to go to Elizabeth Town Centre alone and I often did that on a Saturday morning. I usually walked there, about 25 minutes walk I think. In those days that shopping centre was not a mall, it was still open to the weather but it was nice because there were lawns and flower beds surrounding it.
I spent a lot of my early teens exploring the city of Elizabeth, I went to fairs and fetes that I heard about or walked to a different neighbourhood shopping centre or a park. I sometimes ventured up the Main North Road to Carisbrooke Park in Salisbury.
When I was a little older I was allowed to go to Adelaide alone. I usually went on the train, a journey of about 40 minutes. There was a bus too and sometimes I used that as the bus stop was nearer home but I preferred the train of course. Sometimes I went alone, sometimes, especially in the school holidays, with friends.
In those days the shops in Rundle Street closed at lunchtime on a Saturday, noon or one o’clock so I’d have a couple of hours to browse in the shops. I would get something to eat in the cafeteria of one of the big stores. I liked Cox Foys because theirs was on the top floor, same floor as the toy department, and had big picture windows. I’d buy a ham sandwich and a fizzy drink and sit at a table by the window looking out at the view. Then I’d go up to the rooftop funfair which was another good spot to look down on the city. It was during these years that I first started to carry a camera with me.
Once the shops had closed I could go to the museum or the art gallery on North Terrace. I always went upstairs to see the Egyptian Room where I remember that they had a mummified cat. On other days I would go to Elder Park on King William Road and maybe take a ride on the Popeye boat on the Torrens. I also remember going to see the Highland Games which were held at Adelaide Oval every year. I always enjoyed listening to all the pipe bands. In November I’d go to see John Martin’s Christmas Pageant.
When I was in my mid teens we moved closer to the city and then I used to do these trips more often, especially after I left school. Naomi and I started going to free concerts in the city on Sunday afternoons either at Elder or Rymill Park or, in winter at the Royalty Theatre on Angas Street.
After we moved we were closer to the beach so sometimes Naomi and I would go to Port Adelaide or Semaphore. We liked looking at the ships at Port Adelaide or we’d go to the beach at Semaphore. I think that we walked as far as Outer Harbour a couple of times. Sometimes we took the bus but often we walked because there were no buses on Sunday mornings. It was not that far. A few times when we wanted to go to the movies or a concert in Adelaide we walked there. That used to take us about two hours but we were good walkers.
There were a couple of other places we liked to go. I recall going to Belair National Park on the train and Glenelg, another beachside suburb. We would get the tram from the city to get there. There were sideshows, it was there that we first played Pub Pong, there was also mini golf. There were a couple of places around the Adelaide suburbs where you could play mini golf. I think we went to most of them.
If we were going on one of these outings we always told mum where we were going. She would have worried of course but she knew that we wouldn’t get into trouble and that we’d be back by late afternoon. Mum didn’t drive and she didn’t really like going out all that much. For most of our young lives there wasn’t really anyone else who would take us where we wanted to go so once we were old enough she had to let us go places on our own or with friends.
Of course I should not forget our steam train trips which we did regularly from 1972 onwards whenever we could afford it. We went on the school holiday specials to Bridgewater in the Adelaide Hills and later, once I was working, we often went on trips around the suburbs and to country towns. Most of the people on those trips were much older than we were and predominantly men of course but everyone we met was nice to us and intrigued that two teenage girls liked steam trains.
Usually once every summer we’d catch the regular diesel train service to Victor Harbour for the day. We’d go over the causeway to Granite Island where there were Little Penguins and kangaroos. We’d follow the path round the island and get an ice cream at the kiosk. We always enjoyed the journey through the hills and along the coast which was not built up like it is today.
I never cared about what the cool kids did. I just did the things that I liked to do.