Things just ain't what they used to be.

Let's go back to when I was little.  There was this big place, or it seemed to be, where they let me and other little people swim. 

Since I've got grown I looked at this big place and it was about 8ft wide and two or three feet deep.  I was asked by my older brother about it later on and he said it was about the same size as when I played in it. 

I got to noticing how things changed as I grew older and it was amazing.  You won't believe how big a Payday or Baby Ruth candy-bar used to be.  A five cents candy-bar was enormous and look at them today.  I've grown-up and the candy-bars have shrunk or did they stay the same and I'm looking at them different. 

The same is true for Dixie cups and a Popsicle. 

I've come to the conclusion that part of this can be blamed on me but not all of it mind you. 

From Tallassee to Yates Dam on foot seemed like a long walk.  The same is true for Friendship, Tallaweka and Lake Martin was a long trip. 

If we were going to Montgomery, mama would pack us some lunch plus a few lunchables or snacks.  Uncle Bill would pick us up.  We didn't have a car and we would head out for Montgomery. 

On occasion my granddaddy would tell me to go with him and we would get up early in the morning to go to Jordanville and catch an Ingram Bus to Montgomery.  The bus would put us out and we were on our own until about four in the afternoon when we had to be back at the pick-up point for our ride home on the bus. 

The bus seemed so large and ran so smooth that it seemed like it was no time before we were back in Tallassee again. 

What did we do in Montgomery?

 I don't remember but it seems like all we did was walk up Dexter Avenue going in every store.  Then we would start down the other side going into every store.  In Kress there was an area where we would order a bite to eat.  I would be careful and not order anything expensive for fear that if I ordered wrong granddaddy wouldn't bring me with him on his next trip, which was only about once or twice a year. 

I remember one time standing on the street and looking up at a second story window where Hank Williams was sitting in the window singing to folks on the street. 

I remember Dales Penthouse on the top floor of the building across the street from the bus station.  Things ain't the way they used to be. 

Once again, when I was a young boy I used to visit my aunt and uncle.  My aunt was my mama's sister, her and my uncle never had children.  To make my story complete I need to explain somethings.  My uncle worked at Hollywood Candy Company in Montgomery.  They not only made some candy but they were distributors for other candy as well.  My aunt ran a store.  Let me give you directions, start in Tallassee going toward Clanton, you would go Highway 14 to Wetumpka, turn right on 111 and go through Holtville.  When you reach 143 where you turn right to go to Clanton you have to come to a stop.  When you stop you are facing a store that has been there all my life and gone under quite a few names. 

My uncles last name was Cherry and the stores name was Cherry's Crossing.  A lot of people still call it that.  If you were at the store, across the field is the white church that was featured in the movie Big Fish.  If you remember that movie.  I remember visiting this store at Cherry's Crossing as a young man and my uncle would let us select a piece of candy or two. 

Having a wide choice to pick from makes it difficult , two unusual types of candy stands out in my mind.  One is a covered peanut called Boston Baked Beans and Whiz.  The slogan for this candy was whiz, the best nickel candy-bar there is. 

If you can picture the store that I described there is a story that goes with it.  A car ran into this store, I'm told and it burned. 

When I look at it I'll think things ain't the way they used to be. 

Things that looked big like candy-bars, playgrounds, and swimming holes have all shrunk as years went by.

I enjoy reminiscing over these old days and know all the time that things ain't the way they used to be.