Some like it hot

Some people cannot function in the morning without some caffeine. The United Kingdom Tea Council ( state that 80% of office workers now claim they find out more about what’s going on at work over a cup of tea than in any other way. The figure is 98% in pharmacy.

You go to some branches and there is a hot drink offered to you as soon as you walk in. In others, you are pointed to the direction of the kettle. Sometimes it’s so busy that no one makes a drink all day and you never go back to that pharmacy.

It may be wise to bring a travel mug with you as it’s rare that you get to finish a full mug of the hot stuff. My own philosophy is to drink hot blackcurrant or orange cordial. This is normally met with strange looks. Hot cordial is like a placebo Lemsip. Once it cools down though, you can still drink it. Cold coffee is vile.

Some people don’t like making tea and always say that it’s not their turn. Some pharmacies have a rota and SOP in place. This includes a list on the wall stating who has what. If you give Sarah black tea instead of white coffee, then the near miss log is helpfully on the wall too. People have their own mugs too. Some have their names or age on which is helpful.

If you time tea making just right then a patient will always chime in that they want a cuppa too. It’s a rite of passage for the 14 year old work experience boy to make tea for everyone. This is generally the first time they have ever made tea in their life and they need advising that you need to actually switch the kettle on to get a hot drink.

Most pharmacies collect tea money from staff in order to finance hot beverages. One person is usually put in charge of this complicated and not to forget important task. Often excel spread sheets are used to name and shame staff who conveniently forget to pay up.

Staff are generally on a diet so have no sugar and opt for three biscuits instead. On a good week of offers at the supermarket there may be sightings of hot chocolate and “fancy” caffeine options available at the Phraamcy. Upper class pharmacies, offer soup. Bovril however, is not allowed in my pharmacy. Yuck!

The hot drink is one of the most enjoyable aspects of the day. Lets face it coffee is like lubrication to the work flow, an essential uplift. It may possible to hook up freshly brewed coffee to the Methameasure machine. Staff would be allowed 200ml TDS after successful fingerprint recognition. I’m still waiting for the patent to be approved.

For a few brief seconds, when your lips touch the warmth of your mug and get soaked by the milkiness of your perfect cuppa, you can forget about the chaos and imagine a better place.


3 thoughts on “Some like it hot

  1. Tea the best beverage of the day! The same applies in hospital pharmacy. If you miss your cuppa everyone will know about it!

  2. I liked this blog because, Well in our department I’m the one who more often than not makes the afternoon brew.. When I first started working there I was the youngest and so had to make the brews. I got to know how everyone had their brew and which cup belonged to each person. Now that doesn’t sound too bad but did I mention there was 30 people in the department to remember and that number has gradually increased over the years to 45. As times gone by I’ve struggled to pass this job on to other people (new students), and so 9 years on every afternoon approx 3pm that’s how many brews I make, give or take a few for holidays/sickness. I for some reason remember which cup belongs to which person, whether they have tea, coffee, hot juice, or fruit tea and sometimes hot chocolate. (thats our menu) Whether they have sugar, sweetener and red or green milk. And if I happen to forget one well it’s possibly the end of the world depending whose is missing that is. And then all that for the high price of £1 a week. (collecting of the money is nothing to do with me it gets too political)

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