Tell us about a time you did a 180 — changed your views on something, reversed a decision, or acted in a way you ordinarily don’t.
It was so long ago, that it really does not feel like 180 Degrees any more, just a different way of life. I suppose I should return to the beginning of it all. I do not have a lot of time left to write, too busy with a different life style.
A few years ago I had a telephone call from Joan, my best friend at the time.
“You must come Morticia (that was me), it will really be something different from the ordinary holidays. Everyone goes to the South of France or Italy, sunbathing all day on the beach, but Eastern Europe has now opened up its gates to be explored.”
“I don’t know if Romania is my sort of thing, visiting churches and monasteries.”
“But the holiday brochure talks of good food, gypsy romance and sights you have never seen. Besides it is only a hop away on the plane, and the arrangement is quite cheap. Do you have any other holiday planes for this year?” was Joan’s closing comment, so I decided why not. A month later we were in Romania,at a place called Bistritz, somewhere in the middle of the Carpathian mountains where the wolves and bats say goodnight to each other. OK, I know what you are all thinking, but thoughts are a thing of the past. Actions speak louder than words it seems.
So let’s cut a long story short. No good crying about spilt blood (sorry I meant milk?).
On the second evening of our holiday with a difference, we were attending a local village get together. One of those things organised for the silly West European tourists. Nothing special, but the red wine was flowing and so was the spicy food. We were sitting on wooden benches outside. It was a warm evening and the moon was shining, a full one of course. It was then that I met Drago. I think I met him. He was suddenly sitting next to me. Now that was a man. Tall, slim and the deepest darkest eyes I had ever seen. I was probably on my fourth glass of wine already so I did not notice the details such as long white eye teeth and a pale complexion. His strong arms were tightly around my waist. No chance of escape, but who wants to escape?
I had lost Joan out of sight already. She had teamed up with Fred, one of the members of our group. I was glad, she was happy and I could do my own thing. I suppose I was really doing Drago’s thing. Conversation was not exactly flowing, more actions than words. I can tell you when I looked into his eyes, they were deep pools of dark mysteries. Monochrome is the word, just black and white, some shades of grey and I was floating on another level. It seemed I was looking down onto a world full of melting landscapes composed of forests, black pools of steaming water, and now and again I heard a wolf howl in a mournful lonely tone in the distance.
I think that was when it happened.
“You ‘ave such beautiful skin” said Drago “like silk and satin” and I felt his tongue caress my neck. So now you are in the picture, I bet you think he was a vampire. Yes, he was, an undead, a thirsty one, and so he quenched his thirst on my jugular vein (I think that is what they call it).
Let’s jump a bit and I awoke the next morning in my hotel bed, of course, what did you think? There was a pounding at the door and I heard my name being called. I jumped out of the bed and opened the door knowing that Drago had come for me. He had not come for me. It was Joan asking when I was going to appear at the breakfast table. It was the day of the excursion to the local monastery.
I fell back, blinded by the light streaming through the windows in the corridor. My eyes hurt and I had a pain through my head as if it was splitting.
“Are you ill” asked Joan “you look very pale and your eyes are sort of bloodshot?”
“I don’t exactly feel very lively” was my answer “and I am definitely not very hungry.” I stumbled back onto my bed. Joan shut the door and of all things drew the curtains. The sunlight came streaming into the room, which gave me the rest. I ran to the bathroom, Joan followed, and she helped me to a cold shower.
An hour later I arrived at the local monastery. At least it was an old stone building and inside it was dark and cold, although I had bought a cheap pair of sunglasses at the hotel before leaving. I told Joan to go ahead and visit the monastery, I would prefer to relax outside on the stone steps. Nice and cool and shady.
I felt very tired, although it was some time in the afternoon. I then heard him calling my name. I turned my head to the direction of the voice and saw a door open where stone steps were leading downwards. Yes it was a day room for vampires known as crypt to normal living humans. Drago was waiting and threw me a dead rabbit, so I finished the job off. Feeling refreshed I returned to the normal world. The coach brought us back to the hotel in the early evening. I told Joan I was still feeling a bit shaky and would have an early night.
Vapires do not have early nights, they just have nights. I will not bore you with the sordid details, but it was my first excursion as a vampire. And so the holiday continued.
I arrived back to my home country. I had collected a lot of 180° stuff now.
1. Sleep during the day in a room with the curtains drawn
2. Stay out all night until the sun rises enjoying life with the occasional visit to a blood bank or find a victim
3. Don’t enter any churches
4. Avoid garlic in food at all times
5. Avoid people wearing crosses around their neck
6. Make investigations to find a quiet crypt, preferably in the basement of an old chapel, where you can sleep during the day without unnecessary disturbances.
7. No longer admire yourself in a mirror, there is no point as you cannot see yourself in any case, but others might also wonder why you have no reflection.
Now and again Drago would fly past to see how things were going. He gave me a lot of tips about what to avoid and he brought me the latest vampire fashions from the Carpathians. It was a good job that black suited my pale complexion. I did not even have to buy lipstick any more, I had the most beautiful deep red lips.
Drago told me my 180 degree turn on life was there to stay, but it would be a long and rewarding unlife if I followed his example.