Why go out to eat when you can do it at home?

By Tim Nelson
Updated April 09, 2020
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To paraphrase one of Tolstoy’s most famous lines, all happy families are alike. Every quarantined family is unique in its descent into madness. At least that’s what early evidence suggests, as couples and parents are forced to cope with homeschooling, childcare, cooking, and more, frequently while adapting to working from home.

So what do you get when you combine those factors with closed restaurants? For one UK family who recently moved into a new home, the stressful situation and a desire to skip out on cooking led them to create their very own drive-thru right in the kitchen.

Yes, really. One recent night, Nate and Ashleigh Crowley channeled their frustration with restrictions that prevented them from swinging by a fast food spot to get some burgers into a plan to create their own takeaway window right inside their home.

The feeling that drove them to their burst of inspiration should be familiar to most parents by now.

“We’d been cooking every night, but when Saturday came we were knackered. We were trying to gear ourselves up to make something, and I just said: ‘You know, I could properly just go to a drive-through for burgers tonight, and that’s the one thing we 100% can’t do,’” Mr. Crowley told the Express and Star.

At that point, wife Ashleigh went out to get some microwavable burgers from an open corner store, and the two began assembling leftover moving boxes into a makeshift drive-thru window. From there, it was just a matter of putting their daughter Tallie in the “car” (an empty cardboard box) and having her roll up to her dad at the window to place a (rather lengthy) order with some help from mom.

The drive-thru production wasn’t the product of insanity, but an effort to make the best of an odd situation to entertain their daughter. “Being pushed around on the kitchen floor in a box is one of her favourite entertainments anyways, so that was an instant win,” Mr. Crowley said. “And she finds it hilarious when I pop into view through a window, so she was really into the drive-thru.”

So if you’re a parent desperate to recreate the experience of the outside world for your kids (or just for yourself), improvising your own drive-thru may be the way to go. At the very least, it’s a healthier and more fuel efficient alternative to the real thing.