Close Knit: How long does it take to become an East-ender?

By Laura Napier, based at The Crown Pub

The clocks have changed, and the season has rolled over. I am over halfway now; I have a routine, but random days and timings. I have seen the subtle changes; light, bulbs in the park, events on the blackboard, felt the wind and warmth on my cheek. You have known this place longer, maybe a month, a year, a lifetime; seen more significant change. The pieces are coming together, the web of connections being tangled and made. You curb around truths too sensitive or dangerous to share “Ronnie Kray told me that once…” and then into a quiet mutter in the corner with your mate, and pricked ears gently drop.

Some things are not for an outsider. When does someone begin to belong, how long does it take to become an East-ender, a Regular, maybe all the newcomers really are forever “Slumming it, trying to be Mockneys”? How will he emerge out of this, who have we made, and where is he going? I already know where he lives.