I am the milk monitor


This month it is my turn to buy the milk and biscuits at work.  Everyone takes a turn and, for that month, whoever is charged with the task doesn’t have to pay their subs.

It’s actually a bit of a faff.  People are very picky.  They demand certain biscuits and they have milk preferences too.  Keeping the biscuit tin and the fridge stocked up with the right kind of milk can be very stressful.  There is also the nuisance of having to remember to go to the shops before it runs out (particularly if, like me, shopping is not normally in your daily routine).  I shall be glad when my month is over…

Anyway, whilst standing in the queue at Sainsbury’s, waiting to pay for three packs of choc chip cookies, three packs of Hob Nobs, six litres of semi-skimmed and six litres of skimmed milk,  I was put in mind of the old days at primary school, where we used to have milk monitors.

I doubt that these exist now – do they even hand out milk anymore?  I don’t expect so….

Years ago, we got free milk every day.   Little glass bottles, miniatures of the pint bottles left on our doorsteps.   This was in the sixties, when I was very young.  In those days you could get different coloured foil tops on milk – silver, red and gold.  Gold top was full cream, I know that and we didn’t get that in school.  I think we just got the silver top which I think was full fat and then the red top came in later, as semi-skimmed.  I’ve looked this up and there are a lot of different answers so I can’t be sure now!!!  There was also the special christmas foil top with little holly leaves on it I recall.

Anyway, the milk used to sit there by the door until break time and whoever was milk monitor handed it out.  In the summer, therefore,it was disgusting, warm and sickly.  I hated it.  In fact I’m surprised I can even drink milk now, along with millions of other children who grew up experiencing the trauma of having to drink slightly-off milk!!  I only drink skimmed milk now and I’m sure this is why!

So here I am again, the milk monitor for January.   I miss those  dinky little glass bottles.  Even though they made me feel sick….