When I was a kid on Long Island, there was a drive-through store a few miles from home called Dairy Barn. My parents were regular customers.

There were lanes on both sides of the small building, which held a remarkably large inventory. You’d pull up and tell the clerk, “I need a half-gallon of skim milk, a loaf of white bread, and some cream cheese.” From the back seat, a child’s voice could always be heard shouting, “And chocolate ice cream!” The place also carried soda, chips, packages of hot dogs and burgers, beer, cigarettes, etc.

The clerk would bag it up and tell you the total, which you paid in cash. The process was simple — I don’t recall my parents ever getting annoyed at how long it took — because the employees were quite good about working efficiently. It was a simple way to get some basic groceries without having to get out of your car.

There were similar drive-through chains in other parts of the country, but this was before there were convenience stores at every gas station, which led to the death of Dairy Barn and its facsimiles. That’s too bad, because we sure could use outlets like that now.