AUSTIN, Texas -- A beloved business in the Clarksville neighborhood is struggling to hold on to the past during these modern times.

In an ever changing city, Nau’s Enfield Drug manages to stay stuck in 1951.

“Where else can you go and say, ‘OK, I don’t feel good, I came from the doctor, but I’d like a milkshake with my medicine.’,” said store manager Lauren Labay.

Her family has owned the place since 1971. There is  pharmacy in the front, and a soda foundation in the back, just like how it was back then. Patrons said the drug store is uniquely Austin. 

“It’s so charming to come here and things like just make me so happy, that we can step back in time,” said Victoria Hentrich. 

But recently, it seems like borrowed time. Along with pieces of the past, there is evidence of an uncertain future. The staff is small and there are shelves that are bare.

“Our price points are very low and the pharmacy business, there’s hardly any profit in that, so we’re depending on this kind of a triangle of businesses to make it work and we just cannot pay the salaries,” Labay said.  

While managing the business, Labay will also cook, clean, or take up a cashier shift. Some nights, she’ll stay until midnight.

“I get up every morning ready to put on my best effort and give it all I have and at the end of the day, if we can still open in the next morning, you know, we’ve done a good job. I just don’t know how long we can keep doing that because it’s exhausting,” said Labay. 

Labay said her family’s lease is up in 2020 and they have savings, but she knows it’s not something they can rely on if they’re not able to make money. The story is coming across town. 

“I see bigger businesses opening all the time, lots and lots smaller business, family owned mom and pops falling into bigger business or going away completely, unfortunately,” said Lauren Rogers, a small business owner who was having lunch there.  

Labay has some ideas. She wants to modernize the soda fountain, maybe shift hours into dinner, or finally sell alcohol. The tough part is finding a way to keep the nostalgia, but staying relevant. 

“It would be wonderful, if people kept it in the front of their minds to maybe look at an independent business and then give them chance,” Labay said.