“Enough of the walking, give us a pub !” I hear you cry.
Here it is;
Having set off from King’s Cross at 10.10 last Wednesday Google Maps had told me I’d be at the Prospect by 11.34.
At 11.15, having scoffed a Pigs in Blanket roll and stopped 327 times to annoy commuters by taking photos, I arrived in Wapping High Street.
Wow. This is the real London, tight to the water, away from the tourists and incredibly atmospheric.
Yes, it’s the famous Thames Beach, which half a mile west along the South Bank would be home to sand sculptures, but here just feels mildly edgy.
I thought about a coffee, I thought about a pint.
Undeterred by our useless midday openings, some Spanish tourists had resorted to making their own entertainment.
At 11:45 I suddenly realised the Prospect of Whitby was a good few minutes east, and by the time I’d got there they’d opened up early anyway, bless them.
Another WOW moment, even though they allocated me the table near the bar rather than the one on the outside terrace with a view of Judge Jeffreys’ famous noose.
Any concerns that I’d be alone drinker hogging a table they wanted for diners disappeared as they greeted me as a long lost friend (perhaps I am), one of the best welcomes in a London pub since Greenwich last year.
My decision to kick off the day in Wapping was immediately vindicated as the manager received a call from Bury St Edmunds instructing them that all Greene King pubs must close at 3pm due to a terror alert which I later discovered was due to irate gym owners (or possibly pub tickers).
Simon and Garfunkel sang about “The Only Ticking Boy In East London” or however it goes, I drank a murky pint of Tiny Rebel that cost a fiver but I couldn’t begrudge them that,
and I left at 12:05 while staff were busy phoning to cancel booking for the afternoon and evening. And STILL they sounded cheery.
OK, one down, 21 to go. To the Tower…