I took the little girls to McDonald's for dinner last night. As I looked at that little french fries box from their Happy Meals, it took me back forty years to McDonald's trips with my own family.
I grew up in tiny Twin Falls, Idaho--a community that didn't reach 20,000 residents until I was in junior high. It was a great small town to grow up in. It was big enough not to know every single person in town, but small enough that driving ten minutes was "clear across town."
And we drove clear across town to McDonald's.
It didn't happen very often.
I have one memory of a McDonald's trip. My youngest sister still needed to be held at mealtime, and the restaurant didn't have a high chair. Dad ordered us three big kids each a cheeseburger (not a hamburger, which was a big deal because they cost more). Mom got a cheeseburger plain, as always--she would explain at the counter that meant "bun, meat, cheese, bun that's it"--and Dad got a Big Mac because he was "the dad." We got two small orders of fries to share and small drinks (which in that day was probably 12 oz.).
There was no play place. No video games. And no Happy Meals with junk toys from China.
And guess what?
We were happy, and we went home full.
And we didn't go back for months, I'm sure, because eating out was a luxury we couldn't afford very often.
Wow have times changed.