Childhood in the 1980’s

5 minute Read.

Growing up in the 80’s offered an opportunity to see many changes in not only technology, but in lifestyle too.
It gave opportunity to experience things many kids these days don’t get to see or do, but I guess that’s just what happens from generation to generation – ceased opportunities.

One of the things that constantly comes to mind when driving through new neighbourhoods and estates is the lifestyle of growing up in the 80’s and 90’s. When we as kids back then use to play in parks, play footy and cricket in the streets and sometimes hang out with local friends at the closest Milk Bar or Fish N Chip shop.

In around a few years time, today’s kids won’t know what a Milk Bar or Phone Box was.

I still remember the days when I was sent to our local Milk Bar to grab bread and milk for my Mum when we ran out, a newspaper on a Sunday for my Dad, some urgent item that we’d run out of that couldn’t wait until the big weekly shop at the Supermarket. Oh not to forget there was also the hand written note from a parent to grab them a pack of cigarettes when they were too busy around the house to duck out and grab them.

Then there was the visit for ourselves, taking our weekly pocket money (from drying the dinner dishes and feeding our pets) to buy a bag of mixed lollies, a pack of Hubba-Bubba bubble gum or if your local milk bar was also a fish n chips, then there was the 80 cent minimum (hot) chips, that we’d scoff down with neighbourhood friends.

Heading there involved a short walk or a bike ride (if we were being lazy), a time before video games and technology really took over our childhoods.

Life was so different back then, we had to make our own skateboard ramps and BMX jumps and tracks, there was no council initiatives or projects that are around now days – well not in our suburb anyway.

It wasn’t until late 90’s where mobile phones started emerging and shopping centres became the new playgrounds and meeting points, and the local Milk Bar soon became some what of a forgotten place to us until we really needed to go for a parent perhaps.

So what happened to them iconic Aussie Milk Bars and what changed?

Supermarkets happened to them. Pricing, Extended hours and more of them. This meant more visits to the supermarket each week and more money for these supermarket giants to push these iconic Milk Bars into non existence.
This also meant more opportunities to impulse their shoppers too.

Along with the growth and expansion of Supermarkets, Video games, Technology and Convenience also changed the lifestyles of today’s kids.

Everything today’s child and teen could ever want are in their homes.
Entertainment and Gaming is all online or streamed direct to devices and treat wise everything is sold in Supermarkets or delivered via a few taps from a device, and with parents frequently stepping out to ensure fridges and cupboards are well stocked kids have no reason to leave the house other than to attend school, meet a friend on the weekend at a shopping centre or attend practice of a sport or hobby.

The days of bike ridding with friends after school or playing sports in the street or park are almost well and truly over – with the exception of those who board at the local skate parks.

Back in the early 80’s local milk bars were typically owned by families of Australian descent, then families of Greek, then Lebanese and of late Chinese heritages. They were considered a good cash only business, that probably partially bankrolled the financial success of the families that owned them.

Local neighbourhoods have definitely changed and the way new estates are built and designed, along with council input and corporate influence. Our Urban Landscapes have definitely changed to shape our lives in a template way.

As also a New Homes Consultant with Fernmark Property Group I always recommend growing families consider healthy living options for their children and even older ageing parents. Such as buying in close proximity to walking, running and bike tracks, local parks, skate parks, cricket and footy ovals, dog parks, bowls clubs, local gyms and aquatic centres.

Coming from a Community Health background I firmly believe a fit and healthy family is a happy family and that a family that exercises and plays together, stays together.

Understanding the needs and wants of growing families and having extensive local knowledge and having also grown up and living in the South East and Bayside areas of Melbourne for almost 40 years, I believe I am able to offer families many insights to choosing not only a great home to live and grow in, but also a great plan for healthy living.

Rick Fernandez
Fernmark Property Group


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