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Sundays with my family in Evansville were pretty much set in stone. A slice of cinnamon toast for breakfast then off to Sunday school and church at Salem Methodist. We usually returned home just before noon.

The pinnacle of the day was our Sunday lunch. The feast usually featured fried chicken, corn on the cob slathered in butter, fresh green beans, gravy bread, and sweet tea brewed outside on the porch with significant shovels of sugar.

Gravy bread was my father’s concoction. He would crumble a slice of bread then ladle it with my mother’s thick chicken gravy. Like father like son, a tradition was begun. Together, we would consume a half loaf of bread.

While I played with the dog and scanned the sports pages, Mom cleaned the kitchen and stashed the very few leftovers in the fridge.

Next came the customary Sunday cruise with Dad behind the wheel of our sedan. He made it fun, transforming the rest of us into tourists on a smooth, slow-paced excursion. Each adventure featured new landmarks.

Among our favorite points of destination were Garvin Park, Bosse Field, the Ohio River and an old farm north of town in the charming burg of Darmstadt. It was here Dad would select fresh fruits and veggies for the upcoming week.

Since it was Sunday the transaction transpired via the honor system. Dad dropped the necessary cash into the box placed there for that particular purpose.

Our cruise often included a visit to a local drive-in eatery for an ice-cream cone, slush or frosty mug of root beer to enjoy on the ride home.

Once safely in our abode, it was time to jump into the shower before slipping into pajamas and sprawling on the living room carpet in front of the fireplace and television. Our stomachs were too full for a big supper, so Mom would prepare a large bowl of popcorn to snack on while we watched “Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color” and “Bonanza.”

At last, it was time to climb the stairs to my bedroom and dream of where the next Sunday cruise would take me. The day was designed specifically for family fun. It was all about building togetherness.

Almost every store was closed on Sunday back then. It was a day of rest. A day to spend with those you love.

Not a bad idea, huh?

Contact Columnist Bob Bridge at 812-276-9646 or

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