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There are far more than 5 things that I miss from my childhood but it’s good to start somewhere, so why not with five?

This morning, Gy and I decided to walk down to a breakfast joint not too far from home. Ordinarily, I would have taken out my trusty scooter and been there in under 2 minutes, but the morning was welcoming and lazy enough for us to stroll hand in hand down the street, work up an appetite and savour the taste of hot masala dosas right off the tava.

As we walked back home, our thoughts on the just-finished meal and our eyes taking in the sights by the side of the road, Gy stopped ever so often to point out something in excitement. First, it was a black and white mongrel who trotted ahead of us and looked so carefree. Next it was a capricious little yellow butterfly that flitted around us ,teasing us with her dance of abandon. Finally, it was the most adventurous little squirrel who darted swiftly and bounded across walls in an attempt to eat up all the grains at his disposal. We stopped and gazed at him in delight as his tiny paws held up something to his eager mouth which worked like a dynamo, relishing the food.

Walking the rest of the way home, my mind harked back to things from my childhood which are either redundant or extinct today. Oh, they exist all right, but they seemingly have little practical value.

5 things I really miss about my #childhood and I wish we could have them back. Click to Tweet

5 Things I dearly miss from my #childhood and how I wish I could have them back. #Memories and #Nostalgia as a #parent. #Childhoodmemories

Alarm Clock


This was one of my most prized possessions. I recall having one at every stage of life. Jumping out of bed to switch it off, changing the battery when it slowed down and just looking at it through the day made me feel so grounded and in the moment. 

Today, my smartphone has an inbuilt alarm clock, with multiple recurring alarms. It’s just not the same thing.

A Calculator


I must have been in grade 7 when I first laid hands on a scientific calculator. My dad bought me one after my final exam since it was finally mandated as a part of the syllabus. It was a thrill to punch in numbers, watch the magic of addition and complex division come together to give us the answer.

Today, my smartphone has an inbuilt calculator. The charm is gone.

A Postbox


This is one of the things I miss the most! Walking down the street to post a letter, an inland card, a postcard, an aerogramme, oh the sheer joy is indescribable! It was also one reason I did the snail mail challenge with my blogging group, an act that was received with much favour!

Today, I can send an e-mail using my smartphone. It’s instant, it’s lightning fast and the recipient receives it immediately. There’s something a bit unsettling about that. 


It’s probably silly but I used to wait eagerly for the monthly edition of Reader’s Digest to come home in the post and then settle down to read all the jokes first before flipping to read the articles! A magazine was also very treasured because of the glossy paper that was used for the pages (not very eco-friendly, I’ll admit), which came in handy to cover books that we were really fond of. 
Today, I can read any magazine on my smartphone. As an added problem, I can’t use them to cover any books now. Sigh.

A fixed line telephone


To be honest, I still have a land line at home. I still use it to make phone calls, but it works more as a convenient option rather than the only available solution. Long calls without worry of radiation, smothered giggles exchanged with girlfriends, heart-to-heart conversations with that one true love of your life, ah, the memories are unending.

Today, I have a smartphone. Somehow, I don’t feel so smart though.

You may wonder why I give credence to things, these material objects, in an age where we are moving forward and away from material pursuits, minimalist living and evolved life experiences.

Truth be told, I find that some of my best memories of life were formulated at a time when I had these simple and easy things to lay my hands on. It is also one of the primary reasons I keep Gy away from devices like the smartphone, the Tablet, the computer and the TV. She uses them all, but minimally and with supervision. 

Today, we have every convenience imaginable but life is so very complicated.I think I know what I miss the most- the fact that life was actually pretty simple back then. 

Did you grow up in a time when these things held importance?
Do you miss them too or do you find life simpler now?

(*All images used courtesy Pixabay under No Attribution license)
*Featured & pinnable image courtesy: Shutterstock

Shailaja V

Hi there! I'm Shailaja Vishwanath, a blogger with 12 years of blogging experience and a parent to a teen. I work as a digital marketing and social media consultant. From positive parenting tips to useful productivity hacks, social media advice to blogging advice, you'll find them all right here. Welcome to my blog.


Shilpa Gupte · October 21, 2015 at 9:29 am

Oh yes, I hear you, Shailaja! I miss these simple things, too. In fact, I yearn to go back to my past, and stay there, if I can, never to return to this complicated world of today.

Shailaja Vishwanath · October 21, 2015 at 9:33 am

So do I, Shilpa. I know that's ironic, given how much more 'connected' we are to people and without blogging, I wouldn't have met some incredible people. But the kind of negativity I see online these days is putting me off the whole tech generation. Maybe I'm growing old, I don't know.

Anamika Agnihotri · October 21, 2015 at 10:52 am

Aha the alarm clock which used to leave me bewildered in exam times when its battery would die out at sometime in the night and hence would also be sleeping along with me instead of waking me up. One more possession that I miss today is the radio set which would play All India Radio's scary music early in the morning.

Shilpa Garg · October 21, 2015 at 12:35 pm

True. Life was much simpler back then and that includes people and things. I think my childhood was the best part of my life. From your list, I am trying to remember the make and type of the alarm clock we had last and I think other than flicking through the magazines at a salon, it's been ages I read one! Gosh!!

Rajlakshmi · October 21, 2015 at 1:28 pm

I still see postbox here and have an alarm clock but I miss the magazines most. The magazines previously were more sensible… these days it's all about advertisements, advertising things that I can never afford.

Shailaja Vishwanath · October 21, 2015 at 4:39 pm

Oh gosh, you know what? My silly smartphone's alarm does not work for me now. Half the time I over sleep so maybe the old alarm clock is what I need 😀 Oh the AIR radio transmitter. Yes, I loved that!

Shailaja Vishwanath · October 21, 2015 at 4:40 pm

Time to go out and buy one, Shilpa? 😉 Sigh, I know. I really miss the simple days of my childhood. What have we done to ourselves? Really.

Shailaja Vishwanath · October 21, 2015 at 4:46 pm

Yes I do notice that about advertisements too. But I miss thumbing through magazines at the doctor's office. The smartphone seems ubiquitous. Sigh.

Roshni AaMom · October 21, 2015 at 6:50 pm

heheheh!! I used to hate the alarm clock, growing up! But, all the things you mention are still available – just that we don't use them that often! Let's start a revolution and get back to them! 😀

Shailaja Vishwanath · October 22, 2015 at 3:08 am

Yep, all still available but replaced by that ridiculous device we call a smartphone 😉 Yes, please start a revolution! I will gladly join in!

Usha Menon · October 22, 2015 at 4:28 am

Yes Shailaja.The popularity of modern gadgets has left us spell bound !

Shailaja Vishwanath · October 22, 2015 at 4:29 am

That's really so sad, isn't it, Usha ji?When there is such joy to be found in the simple things, we choose convenience over experiences.

Suzy · October 23, 2015 at 9:59 am

Yes so true, life was simple back then.Those were some of the best days of my life. But I do like my smartphone,.

thejunctionroad · October 25, 2015 at 12:03 pm

Waiting for the monthly edition of Reader's Digest and reading all the jokes first. Done that! Even discreetly re-reading the same jokes five years later. I also remember imagining childishly that one day landlines will come with video capabilities. Technology has made wishful thinking far less exciting.

This post brings back nice memories of the simpler days, beautifully written.

Rachna · October 26, 2015 at 6:46 am

Sweet memories. How nostalgic we feel for things past. Of course, I hated the landline back then when cellphones were not common and I had to find a PCO to inform someone or just to call home. 🙂

Shailaja Vishwanath · October 26, 2015 at 6:52 am

Oh I like my smartphone too. I just don't like the way it has 'replaced' so many of my beloved things 🙂

Shailaja Vishwanath · October 26, 2015 at 6:53 am

I so agree! Wishful thinking had its own charm. Technology with its 'Oh I can help with that' attitude is like an over-helpful shopkeeper at the store 😀

Thanks for stopping by. I really appreciate it!

Shailaja Vishwanath · October 26, 2015 at 6:56 am

Ah yes. Technology has made our lives simpler. No doubt about that 🙂

Parul · October 26, 2015 at 11:54 am

Oh yes! All these things. What fun days! Thanks for bringing those memories back.

Kala Ravi · October 27, 2015 at 4:57 pm

Yes Nostalgia in all its glory! You could add old DD solo channel on TV too. Loved the blog!

Shailaja Vishwanath · October 27, 2015 at 5:02 pm

It really was a magical world, right? 🙂

Shailaja Vishwanath · October 27, 2015 at 5:15 pm

Thank you , Kala! Yes, that Chitrahaar on Sunday morning was something to look forward to, right? Welcome to the blog 🙂

Aparna · November 19, 2015 at 5:52 am

Hi Shailaja! I think its my first comment on your blog…didn't look it up earlier, to be honest. I am so nostalgic now! I fondly remember Chitrahaar, Oliyum Oliyum and the Sunday movie on DD! So much excitement:) I think what I miss most is the wonder of new clothes. Only twice a year for us and so much thrill wearing them. Sadly today I can buy whatever I want, whenever I want, and have lost all that thrill. What a first-world problem to have, eh? 🙂

Shailaja Vishwanath · November 19, 2015 at 6:13 am

Hey Aparna! Welcome and such a delight to see you here. I did wonder why the other Aparna was commenting again then realised it must be you 😉

Gosh, yes, those dresses twice a year. We do seem to indulge a lot these days, don't we?

Rachael · December 2, 2017 at 1:54 pm

I love receiving cards and personal letters in the post. It’s much nicer than an email. Really like this post. I think there’s all things we miss from our childhoods.

Rachael |

    Shailaja · December 2, 2017 at 1:57 pm

    Thanks, Rachael! I agree. We’ve all been there, done that. Sigh. Perhaps there will be a museum of these soon that we can show our kids.

Trudy · December 3, 2017 at 10:49 am

I never had a battery powered alarm clock just the electric digital one and I have always hated that. But, snail mail that isn’t a bill and telephone calls getting interrupted by my mom picking up the extension were golden. Even better was a rotary phone!

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