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A hot water bottle

Hot water bottle inside a furry cover

Hot water bottle inside a furry cover

Clive’s lymphatic fever has thankfully gone, but he’s still feeling cold at night so I’ve been getting him a hot water bottle.

Every time I do so, I find myself flooded with sensory recollections.

When we used to arrive at our holiday home in the winter as children, my mother used to prepare us each a ‘hottie’ as we called them. Other times as well, but it’s from those nights that I remember them best.

First there was the drill-like noise of water pouring from the kettle into the bottle, and the comforting smell of hot rubber.

Then a tiny clucking, gurgling sound as she squeezed the bottle to exclude the air.

I nursed my hottie all the way up the stairs.

It went into the bed before I did, creating a welcome warm patch.

I clutched it as a lifesaver before finally pushing it into the freezing depths of my bed with my feet, to lead the way.

In the morning it was useless; quite cold. But I woke up feeling as if I’d arrived in heaven.

  1. January 29, 2013 at 11:57 pm

    I haven’t thought about a hot water bottle in years. We used them when I was a child, but I don’t think I’ve had one since heating pads arrived on the scene. But, it sure would feel good in a cold bed at night.

    • January 30, 2013 at 8:39 pm

      I’ve never used a heating pad. I once used an electric blanket when I stayed in someone else’s house – boy was it warm!

  2. January 30, 2013 at 1:12 pm

    We have wheat bags that you warm in the microwave and use as a hot water bottle. The advantage is it moulds to your body, great for putting in the small of my back. I always take one to bed with me.

    • January 30, 2013 at 8:55 pm

      Wheat bags sound so intriguing I looked them up! Plus point: don’t contain water that can leak. Minus point: can be overheated and catch fire after you’ve gone to bed with them. They sound brilliant but you obviously need to be careful.

      • January 30, 2013 at 10:31 pm

        If you overheat thema little bit they smell like porridge. I have never known one to catch fire tho’, I think you would have to seriously overheat it for that to happen. they really are a safer alternative to hot water bottles and safe for children and animals.

  3. January 30, 2013 at 7:40 pm


    • January 30, 2013 at 8:56 pm

      Hot water bottles are primitive but effective!

  4. February 3, 2013 at 6:21 pm

    Yes, we call them hotties too! I had the same habit as you, pushing it down to my feet:)

    • February 3, 2013 at 8:14 pm

      Didn’t they make all the difference! 🙂

      • February 3, 2013 at 9:11 pm

        Yes, I will go and find mine now!

      • February 3, 2013 at 9:13 pm


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