For most of my life I have been a part of a 1-vehicle family. One car transported everyone to and from work, school, church and various shopping engagements. Of course back in the late 1950s and early 1960s, we frequently depended on our neighbors for vacation transportation.

Until my brother, Mike, turned 16, Dad was the lone driver in the family. Once upon a time, Mom occasionally drove but it made her so nervous she eventually gave up her license.

For most of my life I have been a part of a 1-vehicle family. One car transported everyone to and from work, school, church and various shopping engagements. Of course back in the late 1950s and early 1960s, we frequently depended on our neighbors for vacation transportation.

Until my brother, Mike, turned 16, Dad was the lone driver in the family. Once upon a time, Mom occasionally drove but it made her so nervous she eventually gave up her license.

Dad drove the car to work and Mom was a “stay-at-home” mom. Brother Mike made his way to-and-from school by bus. If Mom had to go to town, she walked with me in tow. Town and the Post Office where Dad worked were only a few blocks from home.

By the time I reached school age, transportation became a little more difficult with Mike and I at schools on different sides of town. That's where the neighbors came in. Dad didn't go to work until noon; so, there was no problem getting me to school. That first year, I took my lunch. My dependable next-door mom picked me up after school. There always seemed to be a way to get there and back.

My next door mom became a teacher during my second grade year and school transportation was no longer an issue.

After his tour of duty in the Army, Dad didn't like to wander very far from the homestead. So for summer vacations, Mike, Mom and I traveled with my next door mom and her daughter, my best friend, on trips to various locations. We made such memorable journeys to Six Flags Over Texas in Arlington, the Great Smokey Mountains in Gatlinburg, Tennessee and Kansas City, Missouri to see my first Major League Baseball game.

My dad didn't frequent church often when I was growing up, so it was also up to the neighbors to get us there and back.

Dad retired from the Post Office in 1974 and by the time I was a senior in college I was the family's primary driver. A little less than a year on my first job at American Greetings, I bought the family car and provided most of the transportation including trips to and from the grocery store.

After I married and moved out, Dad bought a small car and resumed his driving responsibilities.

During the early years of our marriage, Joyce and found it necessary to operate two vehicles. Her job was 26 miles away and my reporter's job required me to have a readily accessible vehicle. However, we each brought a car into our marriage relationship.

That remained standard operating procedure until we moved to Helena-West Helena. For several years now, Joyce has journeyed to school in Barton with her long-time friend Pam Gibson and I have used the family vehicle primarily for on-the-job purposes.

Today, for many families, it is nearly impossible to achieve the many daily tasks required with just one vehicle. When I was growing up that one car was a luxury. Today, it seems that two vehicles are almost essential for family movement.

Over the years lifestyles have changed greatly. There are so many items back in the 50s and 60s that seemed like luxuries are now considered necessities such as air-conditioners and color TV. Today, the list has swelled to include iphones, personal computers, the Internet and much, much more.

There is a TV commercial that airs quite frequently showing how modern technology has replaced the old. Growing up, we were quite satisfied with black & white TV, a typewriter and dial telephone. I have a granddaughter who finds the old Yellow Pages “unbelievably fascinating.”

Oh well, I guess what were once luxuries are now necessities.