By Ralphine Major

The days of summer vacation are dwindling, and the start of school is almost here!  It is fun to think back to our school days when a day was set aside to go to town.  That would be downtown Knoxville.  There were no malls in the sixties.  When we did not drive the family car into town, we would sometimes catch the blue town bus to go shopping for school clothes.

It took most of the day to cover downtown.  There was J. C. Penneys and The Knox on one side of Gay Street; McClellans, Kresses, Woolworths, W.T. Grants, and Lerners were on the other side.  On this day, there was no time for a movie at the Tennessee Theater or a visit to Lawson-McGee Library.  Lunch was a welcome relief at the Blue Circle counter on Wall Avenue, leaving just enough time to stop at the Emery 5 & 10 and the Quality Bakery on the mall.  By then, it was time to start toward the bus station for the ride home—shopping bags and all!

So much has changed from those earlier days when few families even had a typewriter.  Today,  nearly all have a computer.  Few families had a home phone with party lines that served six to ten households—all using the same line!  Today, nearly everyone has some type of cell phone.  The ways we shop and the gadgets we use have dramatically changed over time.  Hopefully, the friendships that are made during the school year will never change and will last long after the school days are done.  Have a great school year—be safe—and make lots of memories and friends!

Piddle Diddle Update:  Grainger County Tomato Festival, July 29-31.