Waking to the sound of the milk horse

Share your recollections of days gone by....before they fade from our collective memories and are lost forever.
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Stephen Whiteside
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Waking to the sound of the milk horse

Post by Stephen Whiteside » Tue Oct 27, 2015 8:02 am

I used to wake to the sound of the milk horse clip-clipping down the road outside. This was in suburban Melbourne, not the bush. The horse was a gentle old Clydesdale.

The milkie didn't have to give the horse much by the way of instructions - it was the same routine every morning, and the horse seemed to know from habit what was expected of it. It always stopped and started at the same places - roughly.

Having said that, it was not a perfect system by any means. We lived at the bottom of a fairly steep hill, and the street ended in a T-intersection. We lived on the corner. On the opposite side of the intersection was a house with a high brick wall. On two occasions that I recall the horse lost control of the milk cart, and careered through the wall. The owners started to get a bit sick of having to replace it. I doubt if the horse could have survived an accident like that, so we probably had at least three horses. They all looked pretty much the same, though.

Nowadays, of course, I pick up my milk from the supermarket on the way home from work.

The good old days? Well, yes and no - mostly no!
Stephen Whiteside, Australian Poet and Writer


Re: Waking to the sound of the milk horse

Post by Heather » Tue Oct 27, 2015 8:18 am

I remember that sound too Stephen and it's a thought that brings a smile to my face. Putting the glass bottles out for the milkman and the clip clop of the Clydesdale's hooves about 4am. Then in the morning you'd have to be quick to get your milk before the crows put their beaks through the foil tops.

Thanks for the time travel Stephen.

Heather :)

Neville Briggs
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Re: Waking to the sound of the milk horse

Post by Neville Briggs » Tue Oct 27, 2015 9:42 am

I can remember the horse drawn milk delivery. I also remember the horse and cart bread delivery. Over the road from my school was the bakery and beside the school was the paddock where the bakery horses were kept.
I also remember the clothes prop man in the horse and cart. Only just, I must been looking out from my pram for that.
" Prose is description, poetry is presence " Les Murray.

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Maureen K Clifford
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Re: Waking to the sound of the milk horse

Post by Maureen K Clifford » Tue Oct 27, 2015 10:15 am

Teddy Walker was our milko at Redcliffe where I grew up but the milk was delivered in a billy with a tight fitting lid or you took your billy out and he filled it from a churn using a long handled dipper. His little dairy was on the corner across from where the Redcliffe Leagues Cub and footy fields stand today and he had Jersey or Guernsey milkers. He was a well known local identity
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Re: Waking to the sound of the milk horse

Post by r.magnay » Tue Oct 27, 2015 11:43 am

...our milkie was us...although when we lived in the town for awhile we had a horse drawn milk cart... :)

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