Home deliveries: Remembering when groceries were brought to your door

The milkman was one of the many servicemen who would dedicate their mornings to delivering home essentials to people's doorstep. Source: Getty.

These days you can have whatever you want at your doorstep with just the click of a button but before the world of online shopping exploded onto the scene, it’s easy to remember the days of having the essentials delivered to your house everyday for a much cheaper price and a whole lot less fuss.

There was something special about waking up each morning to a warm loaf of bread, some fresh creamy milk or the daily newspaper sitting at your doorstep, no questions asked. And thanks to the hard work of local servicemen, this was the norm for anyone living in this era.

The milkman, the postie, the baker and more were always known around town for delivering the goods and always doing it with a friendly smile!

The milkman

In a time when milk was served in glass bottles with foil lids and delivered on horse and cart, milkmen were some of the most important workers in the town. They had the job of rolling around town, collecting empty milk bottles and replacing them with a fresh serving. The glass clinking in the back of their carts could be heard from down the street and is one of those noises that instantly reminds you of the good old days.

In the ’60s and ’70s the traditional horse and cart was replaced with more efficient motorised carts and delivery trucks which made the whole process even easier.

Milk was delivered everywhere, including schools where it would usually sit un-refrigerated for a few hours in the sun until it was warm, then served up to kids at morning tea time. While milk delivery was definitely one of the best parts of life back in the day, it’s safe to say no one misses that foul experience!

The postie

Although the postie is still alive and well in today’s world, they have a significantly easier job than that of their ’50s and ’60s counterparts. In a world where letters were the main form of communication, posties often came around twice a day, each time with a heavy load of envelopes filled with handwritten letters ready to be delivered to each house.

Nowadays, you’d be lucky to see the postie more than three or four days a week, and you’d be striking gold if your letters were anything more interesting than simply bills and catalogues.

The baker

Fresh bread is one of life’s many treasures, but in a world where carbs aren’t considered healthy and gluten is frowned upon, it’s sadly become a rarity. However, back in the day, a crusty, warm loaf of fresh bread wasn’t just eaten – it was delivered to your door daily.

The baker would come past with a hot loaf that was usually pulled straight from the oven. And of course, this was before wrapped and sliced bread was a thing, so all the warmth and aroma was kept inside until it was delivered and sliced open inside your own kitchen. Delicious!

The paper boy

As a kid in the ’60s and ’70s, one of the first jobs you probably looked into was delivering the local paper around town. Young boys (and sometimes girls) would hop on their bikes and ride from house to house stuffing papers in letterboxes or tossing them over fences before shouting a swift “coo-wee” to the home owner.

While some people still have their newspapers delivered today, the practice is quickly becoming outdated as most people catch up on the news online or on TV.

The garbos

Before garbage trucks had massive mechanical arms to help them dump rubbish, garbos were the ones who did all the work. Usually clad in a short pair of footy shorts, some work boots and a singlet, garbos would run behind the truck collecting bins and throwing them in the back.

Their hard work was so appreciated that it was generally considered courteous to leave them a small bottle of spirits or a six-pack around Christmas time as a bit of a thank you.

The ice man

Long before the days of fridges, people needed an easy way to keep their food cold – this is where the ice man would step in. He would come past with enough ice to fill the truck and house-by-house, deliver blocks to people to put into their ice chests for the day.

Without this easy way to receive ice everyday, most people would have had no where to even store their perishables!

Do you remember home deliveries? What was your favourite thing to have delivered fresh to your door?

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