When I was a kid, the first thing I did when I came home from school was to eat a big bowl of Skippy cornflakes. Then I'd go out down the bush out the back of the house, make huts from tree limbs and play war with the boys in our neighbourhood.
This was back in the day when milk came in bottles, and the ones with the silver tin foil tops had cream sitting at the top. If I was lucky, I could open a new bottle, pour the cream over my cornflakes, toss some sugar on top, and get into it. Of course Mom hated that because the cream should have been shaken up so that the whole bottle of milk could benefit from the creaminess.
Remembering more about the milk in bottles, it was my job to put the empties into a little plastic carrier, pop the milk tokens into one of the bottles (these were purchased from the Murray's Bay dairy down the road and came in little white bags stapled at the top - this was how we paid for the milk) and carry the lot out to the letterbox each evening.
Mailboxes in those days had a special built-in compartment for the bottle rack. Early in the morning, I heard the milkman come in his truck, listened to the clank of the bottles, the rattle of the milk tokens, and voila! Fresh milk with foil tops was left behind for breakfast. Fabulous.
There was none of this plastic bottle stuff, lined with lightproof whatever, screw tops and sealed tabs that you can't get off, and the milk often when bung after a few days because it was fresh and that's what fresh milk did, unlike today where milk exists happily, cuddled within it's plastic container, for days.
There's so much more I could write here, about my early days living on Auckland's North Shore, playing with plastic tommy guns in the bush, setting vicious booby traps for each other. It's a wonder we all made it to our teenage years without missing arms, legs, and eyes.
Something as simple as the memory of those cornflakes set my thoughts in motion.
What was the first thing you did when you came in from school back in the day when you were ten or eleven years old?