I arrived in Grays in the middle of the afternoon of Saturday 10th October, and my only prioer knowledge of the town, apart from Grays Athletic having a brief rivalry with York City in the Martin Foyle days, was a little ditty by Kunt & the Gang which only made his B-sides album ......
|Could be? Maybe there'll be a clue inside|
Traitors Gate, Little Thurrock (1895 / 3112) I think, had the kind of atmosphere more reminiscent of a 2019 Saturday afternoon pub experience than a 2020 one. Course, the usual measures were in place but the locals were such a spirited bunch, it was barely noticeable after about 30 seconds. This despite these huge flappy plastic dividers half way down the pub, but a bit like Nanny on Count Duckula walking through walls as though they weren't there, if local A in my section wanted to talk to local B near pool table, he simply parted the flaps and went on through (don't Russ). In fact, a Jnr BRAPA in his first year of ticking may have found this atmosphere intimidating. Almost like I'd forgotten how pubs 'should' feel! I had to crane my neck and shout through a crowd to the bar from a seated position, in order to get an ale, and when I did, I went Mighty Oak basically because it was all I could hear. A quick phone call with Mummy BRAPA calmed any nerves, Colin who'd be cowering came to sit on the table at long last, and the locals inevitably were soon waving at me and shouting over to find out what my story was. Everyone reminded me a bit of Jimmy Greaves, which I suppose beats Sidney Cooke when you boil it down. I let them give me intricate directions to my next pub, even though I knew full well I'd be using Google Maps which'd hopefully be more trustworthy this time. Cracking boozer though, really lifts the spirits.
|Bloke seated and one obscured by the man standing were the chattiest ones|
|Looking through the screen|
|Gauliflower or Collywog?|