Okay, so fellow pub ticker Eddie F probably is too young to be considered Generation X, which I read you have to be born between 1965-80 to fall into, even I'm (1979) teetering on the millennial side. I was trying to shoehorn in a punk reference, so you can't blame me.
Where were we? That's right, leaving Weeley Heath by bus on Sunday 27th June, Colchester bound. Time for one final taxi ride? You betcha!
You'd think back in Colch, it'd be easy to find one. It wasn't. We found ourselves interrupting everyone from their mid afternoon kebabs before we managed to persuade a chap to take us to Layer-de-la-Haye, out past the old Layer Road football ground where I was surprised to learn Colchester don't play anymore.
I bonded with him over a shared appreciation of Cristiano Ronaldo, and a hope that Portugal would thump the overhyped Premier League heavy Belgians later that evening. Not sure we got any money off the fare though. Here was our 4th pub of the day .......
Three whole Essex pub people had told me, all independently of each other, that Donkey & Buskins, Layer-de-la-Haye (1819 / 3248) was not really up to much. To that, I would say poppycock, piffle and apple sauce! 'Gastro' they'd said. Nonsense, a strong contender for pub of the day and ask Eddie if you don't believe me. We were seated in a 'MartinTaylorChampionOfTheThames-esque' table leaning against the bar. The staff were chatty, the beer was top drawer, every woman was attractive ('NOT that that's a factor '#WokeSi2021) and the pub was traditional. If people were eating, they were doing it silently outside the bogs. Eddie spied a group of twentysomethings across from us, keeping their masks on at their tables, pulling them down only when taking a sip! Neither of us had seen behaviour like this since masks were introduced last September. "We like quirkiness here!" says the best barmaid as I introduce her to Colin. She even gives him a dog biscuit! He gave it a sniff, but says he'll stick to mini cheddars. Super stuff from the D&B.
|Note the ex-GBG stickers, always the sign of a classic|
|Erected? Must be all the herbal viagra in the last pub|
|Pints are here, hurrah!|
|Trying to squint at the football but impossible from our angle on low down settee|
|Eddie n Col get the tick done|
|Accidental tent roof or sky? Photo of the day anyway|
Being the bus legend he is, Eddie is not 100% sure the bus will stop where we hope it will as it has to go into this little inlet thing, but might actually speed down the main road. But no problem, he's found a closer stop. Problem is, it is down a muddy flooded track and my yellow trainers suddenly seem a rather silly idea. All good though, it soon opens up into a dry track along the side of a field.
|"Cash only" but in here, they didn't need a sign to tell me that'd be the case|
|Col gets a bit lairy, must be the plastic!|
Having a night off tomorrow, might go pub ticking, so join me Fri for my final three pubs with Eddie, and then my first three on Tuesday where I'll head to the seaside!