Wednesday, December 21, 2005

The Milkwagon and the Horse

When we lived in Calgary in the late forties of the last century, milk was still delivered--unhomogenized--in bottles. In the winter the milk and cream in the bottle left on the back porch by the milkman would often freeze and frozen cream would stick out an inch or so from the top of the bottle.

The milkman would take a bottle or two of milk--or whatever the order was--from his wagon and deliver it to the back door and, while he did that, the horse that pulled the wagon would move on to the next house on the milkman's route. It was clear that the horse had the route memorized.

I often wondered whether the milkman could have found his way if the horse were given a vacation and a temporary substitute were placed in the wagon's traces for a time.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I also remember the wagons for milk and bread. There was a weight attached to a line that was dropped when the driver wanted the horse to stay at a spot when the milk was delivered. Do you know what the name of that weight was?

1:53 PM  
Blogger Peter Junger said...

I am afraid that it my case the horse did not need an anchor. She went on to the next house while the milkman made his delivery. The horse knew the route and the routine.

2:39 PM  

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