This was a bid odd.
When we stayed with one of R's sisters in England in June, in both her flat and her caravan in Hexham, there was a plastic bucket in the sink, kind of in the shape of the sink. This was where you washed the dishes, that is you filled the bucket and not the sink itself. When we were in the caravan on our own and I was washing dishes, I found it quite annoying but also helpful. You could put muck down beside the bucket into the sink without making the dishwater dirty, along with rinsing something off without muck going in the sink.
R has three sisters, and the younger two did not use a bucket in the sink, only the older. I have a vague memory of them being used in Australia, or did I just see them on an English tv show?
Eventually, I asked. 'K, why do you use a bucket in the sink?'. She replied that it was kind of an old idea, but she thought it was more hygienic and her mother always used one.
This caused my thought processes to start. Ok, I understand superficially, but why is it more hygienic?
Firstly, it is an old persons thing. Young people in England do not seem to use a bucket in the sink to wash dishes. So, old people's thing. Why?
Generally in England, people don't seem to have separate laundries. The washing machine and clothes dryer are often in the kitchen and they is not a laundry trough. So perhaps you would not want to wash your dishes in the same sink as you wash your smalls or rinse out baby nappies.
In Australia, laundry troughs used to made of concrete and kitchen sinks often of something hard with an enamelled coating, or porcelain. All are pretty unforgiving surfaces should you knock a plate a bit hard against the side of the bowl.
But then plastic has not been around forever, so what was used as a sink insert before plastic? I am sure it wasn't bakelite. Was it enamelled tin? Do I remember a flatish tin dish that might have been used for washing dishes even without a sink?
Did Pants, being of a certain age (ouch Pants, that hurt), adopt the English custom of placing a plastic dish in her sink to wash up?
When Michelle orders Brian to scrub the centuries old mysterious substances from under his nails and to then wash the dishes, does he use the plastic dish?