July 6, 2013 § 14 Comments
Hollywood kisses were exchanged, great big smackaroos planted on big-screen lips, and when those stars bothered to speak their voices came, tinny, from a small gray box hung on a partially rolled down window.
I can still see our drive-in—never mind that it became a year-round flea market years ago, the big old marquee announcing bargains, bargains, bargains!
Once it was the place to see the white hats overcome the black, go around the world in 80 days, and watch beautiful people with lips the size of Buicks exchange closed-mouth kisses.
I wish I could say I went to the drive-in with a boyfriend in his first car, but the drive-in was the make out spot of the 50s and I was under ten that decade.
By the time I was dating we were way too cool for the drive-in, and almost too cool to make out. Instead we went to Jefferson Airplane concerts, ruining our ears for future use.
My trips to the drive-in were made in my PJs and I always brought my pillow. Chris, Claudia and I shared the backseat, our parents up front, their heads two silhouettes against the screen.
Those of us in the backseat sometimes wondered what was going on in the dark of the other cars, but quickly got distracted by the gigantic drama unfolding beyond the hood of our car.
At intermission, we watched the cavalcade of wax cups fill with chipped ice and carbonated drinks, watched the popcorn cascade from the machine, all pictured in mammoth detail on the screen.
We never left our car. The food was too expensive and the bathrooms questionable.
We ate our movie snack out of a brown grocery bag. Always pinching pennies, my mother popped our corn at home; a little salt, a little margarine.
We watched the clock in the corner of the screen tick off the minutes until reel two.
Only eight more minutes to showtime!
At two more minutes to showtime, people would begin to wander back to neighboring cars carrying cardboard trays of refreshment stand food. As we chewed our cold popcorn,the smell of hot butter wafted through our open windows.
I remember, if I was awake when the credits rolled, watching the headlights of departing cars sweep cones of light up onto the big screen as they drove away. Hugging my pillow, I held the stories against my heart, the excitement, the drama, and most of all those Hollywood kisses.