The in-built recycling default which many of the pre-War generation had drilled into them may linger on in a few. I did fashion a strange seed container to fill up the bird feeder the other day out of an empty plastic bottle, so perhaps I’ve inherited some of it.
I have also inherited this little tin. It wasn’t actually left to me in any formal way. Having to help clear my aged Aunt’s home a while back when she went into care was always going to be a miserable task, but amongst the everyday household belongings and food tins ten years past their sell-by date, something would emerge every so often to lighten the mood.

tea caddy from old tin
This artefact was one such highlights. My Aunt did rep theatre work during the 40s and being of the make do and mend mindset, would make sure she was properly equipped for the vagaries of boarding room life. So to be certain she always had tea to hand, this old Nescafé coffee tin was painted up in enamels and served as a tea-caddy in the days when tea was still sold loose into paper bags.

make do and mend
And when a neighbour asked my Aunt (a lady in her late 80s!) to house a wayward and homeless son for a few weeks not long ago, the tea-tin was still there in her spare room, alongside a plug-in kettle. And as soon as we’ve freed up our spare room again, it’ll go on the window sill there.

(see the Brooke Bond tea packets on this site)


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