M is for Milk


When I was a kid milk did not come in cartons or plastic bottles.

It came in glass bottles with foil lids and it arrived on your doorstep in the early hours of the morning.

I remember lying in bed listening to the clink of the bottles as the milkman ran up the path to our door. Then would come the clank and rattle as he deposited them into the plastic container that my mother had placed on the top step.  He would take the empty bottles and replace them with new ones.  Gold tops with the thick layer of cream on the milk and silver tops for the more homogenised milk.

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Every evening the milkman would drive slowly down the street calling ‘Milko!’ so that anyone who needed any extra milk, cream or yoghurt could easily top up their supplies.

At school, every day, milk would be delivered.  Crates of little bottles, one third of a pint, would be brought to each classroom.  Each of us was expected to drink a bottle of milk with our morning snack.  Since the crates had been delivered early in the morning and had been standing in the sun for approximately five hours, the milk was often quite unpalatable.  The teachers didn’t care what the milk tasted like – they didn’t have to drink it.  Their job was to make sure that we drank it. Some sort of government edict was in place apparently. There was no place for lactose intolerance in the fifties. A note from home was required if one wished to be excused from drinking milk.  Some kids managed to wheedle a note from their folks, but mine would not be part of that.  I would drink my milk. It was good for me.


Fortunately, a new invention made drinking warm (tending toward sour) milk  far more pleasant.


Flavoured straws.  Placing one of these wonderful things into the milk allowed the drinker to enjoy chocolate or strawberry flavoured milk.  Yum!   Sun-spoiled milk problem solved.  

I still enjoy milk, icy cold, with cookies.  Yum!

Images from Google


12 thoughts on “M is for Milk

  1. I am so running behind in A to Z challenge. But i enjoy all your post Erica on mail. So simple and straight from heart.

    Love from Bangalore with banana milkshake that i am going to make now ;p

  2. I remember school milk! We weren’t allowed to use flavoured straws or add Nesquick, but luckily for us the milk was always cold. I think that’s a benefit of being educated in a cold Victorian building – cold milk!! in the lead up to Christmas we used to save the bottle tops to make decorations for the Christmas tree.

    This post has brought back happy memories. Milk is still delivered locally in glass bottles but as I am now lactose intolerant, it’s never delivered here. Most people buy their milk from the supermarkets in plastic bottles – just not the same.

    Eileen @ In My Playroom (also doing the A to Z Challenge)

  3. I, too, don’t recall school milk ever being spoilt. I wonder if it’s a protective selective memory, like not remembering bad weather in summer. Similarly, I have no recollection of being made to drink the milk. It was always there and, at Grammar school, close to the tuck shop. The tops were carefully removed, their shape corrected, and they were then flicked about the classroom – much to the teachers’ annoyance. That was only for the first and second formers, though. Once into the third form, such pastimes were far too childish. After all it was, by then, the 60s, and we were teenagers (in my case, that meant I was allowed long trousers for the first time). Teenaged boys didn’t play children’s games.

  4. I miss the daily delivery of milk, eggs, and cheese from the local dairy. I only got to experience it when I lived in England when I was younger. There was nothing like that here in the states though. I wish we could still have that luxury. 🙂

    Jamie Dement (LadyJai)
    My A to Z
    Caring for My Veteran

  5. I still buy our milk in those glass milk bottles and I STILL have the same carrier that is in your picture. Until a few years ago, we had it delivered to our home, along with yogurt, cottage cheese, whipping cream etc. Every time I go to the grocery carrying my old milk carrier, someone comments and asks where in the world I got it. It is the best thing for carrying the glass milk bottles in so they don’t tip over in a bag.

    In school, we paid 2 cents for our milk. On Mondays I would take a dime to pay for the week’s milk.

    Carol @ Battered Hope

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