Fancy a cuppa?

I don’t like to say that things come in threes!  To be honest, I’m not superstitious, and if something goes wrong my experience tells me that that is probably all that will happen – or that EVERYTHING will go wrong – not just three little things.  So, when the TV was blown, the Microwave too, I wasn’t too surprised that the kettle and a variety of sockets were also the victims of our mini powercuts.

Fortunately everything else was ‘cooking with gas’, so we were able to continue making our tea by boiling our water in a saucepan until the situation could be rectified.  I didn’t realise at the time that it would be so difficult to take a picture of a boiling pan of water!  I actually wanted to catch it at a particular moment, but found it impossible, so you will have to make do with the one above.  You see the whole thing reminded me of a moment of light relief (several moments, if truth be told) from my (very early) childhood.

Before we go any further I should remind you that I am old.  No, I’m very old.  You see my little grandson has worked out that I am 175, so who am I to disillusion such a young mind?  175 I will remain for the rest of my life, no doubt.  You will all grow older, but I am already there….. and there I will stay.  So, at this great age I obviously have memories that some of you will never have had the pleasure of experiencing, and others will have similar ones that have been forgotten.  That pan of water brought one to mind.  Who remembers Dr Finlay’s Casebook?  Black and white TV was the order of the day, and the two doctors were kept in order by their Scots housekeeper played by Barbara Mullen.  This might have been the highspot of her career as far as some of you are concerned, but my memory isn’t of this programme, but of something that went before this. The public information films that are shown today are a far cry from those shown in the early days of television.  In retrospect they were full of propoganda, but there was one that was shown time and time again, and starred Barbara Mullen.

How do you make the perfect cup of tea?  Warm the teapot, add the perfect amount of tealeaves, etc, however, the most important thing was the water.  Best boiled in an open pan it should be left until “……. all the little bubbles start moving towards the centre”

I remember watching it and thinking how lovely the bubbles looked as they moved towards the centre, in fact they became quite mesmeric!  The problem was that Barbara then moved the pan to make the tea – and I wanted to watch the bubbles a bit longer!!  Looking back, though, I’ve often remembered it, because I have never boiled a pan that produces bubbles in the same way.  In retrospect I think that maybe she wasn’t boiling water after all, and it was all just a sneaky way to get everyone to use, and therefore pay for, more power!  Would Barbara enter into such deceit?  Who knows, but until I see that film again I’ll continue to wonder..

(Until tomorrow)

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