Day 18 May Blog Challenge – Gasoline & Icees

Today’s May Blog Challenge Topic Is:

Day 18, Saturday: Tell a story from your childhood. Dig deep and try to be descriptive about what you remember and how you felt


 I had butterflies in my 8-year-old stomach as I went to sleep that night.  My dad had an important job – he helped people get where they needed to go  – yes, he helped the world turn and in the morning I was going to spend the day at work with him.   People knew to come to my dad because his business had a big red star called Texaco which I thought meant “Here’s Where You Find Help”.  I am the oldest of 4, the only girl and these days made me feel special.  Little girls need special time with their dads and I know more than likely that this was something my mom helped make happen.  So off we went before the sun came up with packed lunches courtesy of mom.  I sat in the office while dad opened up the bay where he worked on cars, unlocked the gas pumps and made sure the bathrooms weren’t too disgusting (they were always disgusting – so gross).

I liked the smell of the gas and the way my uncle (who also worked there) was chatting with customers and my grandfather (who owed the station prior to my dad) and my grandmother (who collected the money to take to the bank) dropped by.  My dad would sometimes allow me to get in one of the cars and cause the lift to go up and down like an amusement ride.  Everyone that came by knew my dad and I felt important when my dad would introduce me.

The California summer days were often miserably hot until the afternoon breeze from the San Francisco Bay rolled in.  By mid afternoon – just when I was about to do the very thing dad told me not to if I came (whine) – he would pull out a couple of quarters and send me over to the 7-11 store which was about 15 steps away.  Walking into the store with it’s cool air conditioned breezes allowed my breathe to come back.  I carefully studied the Icee choices although in the 1960’s they were always the same two selections:  Cola and Cherry.  I always chose Cola since cherry tasted like cough syrup. Watching the brown iced mixture flow into mountainy swirls inside the cup made me feel rich.  As I walked back to the station it was as if I was taking some of the store’s air conditioning with me in that cold cup.  Sometimes my dad would ask me to bring him an Icee too.  Then he would  take a moment to wash his grease-stained hands with Lava soap and sit while we let the cool, sugary liquid slide down our throats turning our insides into a wintery day.  



  1. I have loving memories of Lava soap myself. I really liked your memory. Especially the picture! How I miss those gas stations where they pumped the gas for you

    • Hi Paula, Yes it’s odd to think that there are entire generations who have never had anyone pump their gas unless they live in Oregon where all gas stations are required to provide that service.