Saturday, January 21, 2006

The Vampire Jeffrey

1990. My best friend JJ and I were in the midst of our Euro-tour backpacking adventure. We arrived in Salzburg, Austria - home of the The Sound of Music, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and his balls. It was also home of one of the most popular youth hostels in Europe, according to the backpackers' bible, Let's Go. As backpackers, we were more interested in the legendary party status of the hostel than the other attractions.

The hostel did not disappoint. It had clean rooms with bunkbeds (don't ask if I had sex in one of them. Yes.) and was situated right in the heart of town. But most important, it had a fabulously cheap little pub right on the first floor. It was like hanging out in your friend's basement, and everyone staying there congregated in the pub day and night.

Understand that backpackers are, on the whole, slobs. We are budgeters, living off very little each day in order to stretch out our adventures for as long as possible. Our clothes are usually dirty and rumpled. Our hair is messy and free of mousse or gel. We drink cheap beer and eat cheap food. It's a glorious existence. As we sat in our new favorite hang-out our first night in Salzburg, a decidedly unbackpack-like figure came into the bar. He was tall and pale. He wore a long tweed coat and dark sunglasses. His dark hair was slicked back, and his high chiseled cheekbones made him look like he had been cut from stone. He was completely out of place, and yet his presence was so commanding that he fit right in. His eyes scanned the crowded tables and settled on JJ and me. The next thing we knew, Jeffrey was heading towards our table carrying three glasses of fine red wine.

He proved to be an interesting character. He was charming, chivalrous, and had impeccable manners. His accent was indiscernible. He was vague about what he did for a living and where he lived. He bought us lots of wine and kept the conversation lively and fasinating. He spent the entire evening with us, and then suddenly he said he was hungry and had to go. He did not invite us to go with him, but he promised to come back to see us the next night.

As we got ready for bed, JJ asked me what I thought of our new friend.

"He's a vampire," I responded.

"I know," she replied, not in the least bit surprised by my statement, "what tipped you off?"

"He never took one sip of his wine the whole night," I noted.

"Do you realize he called you by your full name, and you hadn't told it to him?"

"Fuck, I didn't even notice that."

"I can't wait to see him tomorrow!"

The next day, we met two pretty Australian boys on The Sound of Music tour (someday I will blog about that). We spent the day with them, and then met up with them for dinner downstairs as they were - conveniently - also staying at the hostel. As we sat on the floor of the crowded pub eating our dinner of Weiner Schnitzel, mushy potatoes, and Austrian beer, we told them about Jeffrey the Vampire. The boys thought we were wacked out Yanks who had read too much Anne Rice (I admit that we had read the Vampire Chronicles obsessively). And then Jeffrey arrived.

He was clearly disconcerted when he saw the boys there, and the boys seemed just as uncomfortable with his appearance. We knew that Jeffrey wouldn't leave because of the boys, and we also knew the boys were hoping to get lucky, so they weren't going anywhere either. We were curious, dying to find out more about him. I remember him smiling at me in a knowing way when he brought me my wine. He was completely focused on JJ and me, barely acknowledging the boys.

"We know," I said.

"I know," he replied, not in the least bit surprised by my statement, "what tipped you off?"

"The wine."

He laughed and pushed his glass to me. "No point in keeping up that appearance anymore," he said.

The boys were freaked. They started to back their chairs away, but Jeffrey insisted they had nothing to fear. We spent the rest of the night grilling Jeffrey about his life - or rather - his life of being dead. Again, while he gave us details about himself, everything was vague, surface, glossed over. I remember him telling us that we intrigued him, and that he never hurt anyone who intrigued him. The boys did not intrigue him, and he made that clear. But they were with us, and that was enough for him. The boys, still disbelieving, got up and said they needed to use the bathroom. Jeffrey stood up and leaned on my boy's chair. When he returned, Jeffrey asked if his sister enjoyed hearing about him. I thought the boy was going to shit himself - he had been on the phone with his sister back in Australia - telling her about Jeffrey.

Jeffrey finally decided it was time to go. I'm assuming he needed to "eat." Before he left, I insisted we take a picture together. He agreed, and posed with me and the boy. The flash went off, but then Jeffrey shook his head.

"No," he said.

"What's wrong?", I asked.

"That won't work. Here let's try it again," he said. He reached into his pocket and put his sunglasses on, and then pulled me away from the boy, so it was only the two of us in the picture. When the flash went off again, Jeffrey smiled.

"Better," he said, and then hugged us goodbye. We never saw him again.

We always sent our film home while we were backpacking. Having it developed in Europe was expensive, and we didn't really want to carry around all those pictures. When I got home several months later, I couldn't wait to finally see all the fabulous shots we had taken. As I looked through the Salzburg pictures, I noticed something odd.

The picture of Jeffrey, the boy, and me did not come out. It was completely black - even though I specifically remember the flash going off and how he blinked at the brightness. There was nothing there, not even an outline or a hint of something in the shot. It was just inky blackness.

The picture of Jeffrey and me came out just fine.


Believe what you will.

81 comments:

yournamehere said...

Great story, Brooke. There are no such thing as vampires, but great story.

A female sprite once gave me a rim-job in Haiti.

Brookelina said...

Believe what you will Todd.

MoDigli said...

WOW! ... And I thought you were gonna say he was in charge of a sex-slave ring trying to recruit hot young american girls!

This is even MORE shocking than what I expected! hehehe... :)

Alistair! said...

The jury's still out with me on this one. 'Cos I back-packed around Europe in the mid-80s and heard some pretty spooky stuff. Nice telling though.

Brookelina said...

MoMo - believe me, that was a very real possibility over there!

Alistair - thank you! I don't know what Jeffrey was - he could have been some vampire wannabe freak. But there are a lot of weird things in this world, and I can't help but think that anything is possible.

Besides, I'm a huge Buffy fan - and I like to think that I actually did meet a vampire.

Übermilf said...

That guy looks like Calzone's arm. Calzone's arm, are you a vampire?

Brookelina said...

Hmmm...nope. Don't see it.

miss kendra said...

he looks vaguely like calzone's arm.

i don't understand the picture thing, so clearly he's a vampire, as i understand everything.

Dave said...

Interesting story. Now tell us more about the sex at the youth hostel...

Lushy said...

I totally believe it, having met a vampire in New Orleans. I'm sure of it.

Charming fuckers, aren't they?

Brookelina said...

Miss K - well then he must be a vampire. And I'm not seeing the resemblance at all. Jeffrey had that whole suave European thing going on.

Dave - I promise to blog about the rest of my adventures in Salzburg. Salzburg was very very good to me.

Lushy - absolutely! And now I think you need to blog about your vampire encounter.
By the way, are you a Buffy fan?

The real me said...

Todd, F* you for never commenting on my blog. And yeah, this is me commenting to you on another person's blog. (I'm half drunk on fin red Italian wine, BTW.)

Brooke, luvie, I always thought JJ was a man... I wonder how (s)he'll feel about being outed on your blog?!

sandra said...

Oddly, I am watching Buffy and reading this at the same time (just got the box set).

Jo said...

I WANT to believe. Does that count?

at the Lake said...

I was backpacking in Europe in 1990 but missed the wall coming down.

Brookelina said...

TRM - be nice to Todd you lush! He's very sensitive. As for JJ, I knew someone would say that! I am simply protecting the identity of my best friend, who in all likelihood wouldn't give a shit if I put her real name on here anyway.

Sandra - oh!!! What season! Is it with Spike? Oh how I love Spike.

Jo - clap your hands if you believe!!

Brookelina said...

Lake - remember all those huge news stories about how the biggest party in the world was on the Berlin Wall New Year's Eve '89? Yeah, I was there. Me, David Hasselhoff, and a few million others. It was awesome. Greatest night of my life. I'm sorry you missed it. I really have to blog about that.
Nice legs by the way.

Lushy said...

Oh hell yeah, nice legs. Woah.

ChickyBabe said...

What are you smokin' Brooke?? Here, have a vegemite sandwich! ;)

Knitty Kitty said...

I'm staying in a hostel and nothing that cool has happened. Just crappy music from the 90's and a shitty shitty mattress.

sock puppet said...

knitty kitty! yay!

Brookelina said...

Lushy - we are so alike it scares me.

Chicky - the man I loved in Oz couldn't get me to eat that shit, so there ain't no way you are going to get me to do it.

Knitty!!!!!! But you love it there, yes? It's so fabulous. I hate you more each day for being there. And I love you.

Sock - I hope you were machine washed before you came here.

TrueJerseyGirl said...

Girl, that is just straight up freaky.

Brookelina said...

TJG - what's really freaky is my dorky smile in that picture as a vampire is hugging me. Clearly I was trashed on red wine.

Monkey said...

I completely believe this. It's also possible that he was photographed too, as I understand it. My father read Bram Stokers Dracula to me when I was six and though I can't into Anne Rice, I've been fascinated ever since.

He doesn't look like Calzone's arm. CA is Irish and Scottish through and through.

Monkey said...

And Brooke? The goofy smile on your face? I would have been grinning like that too, it's just what I do.

Anthony said...

Like most, I'm not sure what to believe, but it is a compelling story.

Bill said...

I'm not sure he looks pasty enough to be a vampire. You sure he's not just a state trooper on holiday? Just wonderin' ...

Flounder said...

First, hotels is spelled h-o-t-e-l-s, not hostels. Duh!

Second, I'm calling bullshit on the whole vampire thing. If he were a vampire, he wouldn't show up in pictures (or is that mirrors?).

Finally, I think that you need to write a book. You're writing is very entertaining, and apparently I'm not the only one who thinks so. Do I hear career number four?

Now I am going to help myself to some punch and cookies with Mohammed, Sidney, Clayton and Jug-Dish.

Brookelina said...

Monkey - the first three books of the Vampire Chronicles are abfab! You will swear to the allegiance of the undead. Anne does tend to blather on in many of her other books though, so I can see where you couldn't get into her.
And I know you understand the dorky smile, turkey twat. Of course you do.

Anthony - compelling - that is so cool. Thank you!

Bill - as usual, I have no idea what you're talking about.

Flounder - sometimes I think you are dumber than a bag of hammers. And if you keep calling bullshit over here I'm going to take you outside and beat you to a bloody pulp.
As for the writing, thank you. I truly wish I had written a book about my adventures while they were still fresh in my mind.

Dan-E said...

nice hair. was this in the middle of the 80s? you really are from jersey.

babyjewels said...

I'm now officially stalking you btw.

Then you pull out a vampire story. Do you not know how much I LOVE ME MY BUFFY. And even more my SPIKE. I totally believe this story. You are a great story teller. Wow, what an experience. Were you ever a little afraid of him?

babyjewels said...

I forgot to ask -- when you hugged him, was he not warm? room temp? cold.

I will be thinking of this on and off all day now.

Brookelina said...

Dan - jealous of my long luscious locks are you? Be nice there, remember, no hair products or makeup of any sort were being used during that time. That was all natural beauty there.

BabyJ - I love being stalked by hot chicks. It's what I live for. Especially Buffy fans.
We were never afraid of Jeffrey, I think we were too young, stupid, and drunk to be afraid. But he also was never in the least bit threatening, if anything he treated us in a very protective manner. As for temperature...it was January in Austria...everyone was freezing their nookies off...so there was no way to tell. Besides, I was too young, stupid, and drunk to even notice. Dammit.

babyjewels said...

Brooke, I just think that is such an amazing experience to have had. And all that stuff where he knew your name, new the boys were calling their sister - it just gives me the chills. I'm a believer that anything is possible.

I feel like reading some spuffy fanfic now. (I am such a dork)

Cactus Prick said...

Good stuff.

Freakshow.

Brookelina said...

BabyJ - the moment that I remember best is when I told him that we knew - and he just knew what I meant. I get a little chill when I think about it. He was actually kind of hot in a cadaverous Euro-trash kind of way. I sometimes wonder what would have happened if the boys hadn't been there that second night. When I asked him if he had sex - his response was - "That depends. Do you?"

Prick - I love it when you call me that.

Flounder said...

You better start being nice to me Brooke, or I am going to grab up your virtual pet Pork Chop, jam his ass into my virtual smoker, and serve virtual pulled pork sandwiches to everyone over at my blog!

Chuck Dawson said...

Sorry babe, I'm with flounder... complete and total bullshit.
(I still think you're hot, though)

Kallun said...

Next time you tell that story, you should change the nationality of the boys to something other than Australian... I'll be damned if an Australian guy would be frightened by a vampire... Personally, I've beaten up a bunch of them myself...

Brookelina said...

Flounder - now is that any way to talk to me? The girl who brought you into this world?

Chuck - that's ok luv. Every word is true, but feel free to meet Flounder in the boiler room from now on.

Kallun - would it help if I told you that that two nights later I had wild animal sex with an Aussie? Not that sissy one of course.

Kallun said...

Now thats more like it!

Flounder said...

I love you Ms Wose!

Brookelina said...

Kallun - that's exactly what I said! Or maybe he said it...

Flounder - there's a good boy!

Damien said...

He's either a Vamp or a lost Abercrombe model wow check out that jaw line!!!

Chuck Dawson said...

I'm sorry Ms Wose, you're not going to make me go the mop closet with you during recess again are you?

Brookelina said...

Damien - well the undead are always beautiful. So says Anne Rice.

Chuck - why do I get the feeling I've walked into one of your sexual fantasies?

J to the fucking C said...

I have no idea what you're talking about!

I mean... but if you did... Is that okay?

The real me said...

That's Ms. Luscious Lush to you, baby.

Monkey said...

When I asked him if he had sex - his response was - "That depends. Do you?"

Why do I find this line so damn sexy?

Jill said...

Dammit, Brooke, your backpacking stories are so much better than mine. I'm fucking jealous.

Spinning Girl said...

He could have been one of the semi-living dead, that's why he showed up on film.

Neil said...

You seem to have an unusual sexual attraction to literary horror figures. If I told you I was as hairy as a werewolf, would that turn you on?

Fun story!

Brookelina said...

Jesus - didn't you hear me calling out for you last night?

TRM - wild woman.

Monkey - because it was damn sexy! I should have done him.

Jill - that's only because I have a freak magnet implanted in my body. I've tried to have it surgically removed but the doctors said it would kill me.

SG - or he could have just been a crazy sexy freak. Which works for me too.

Neil - wax on, wax off. I so don't like an overly hairy beast. Unless it's Monkey of course.

Brookelina said...

It's way past my bedtime.

Bill said...

My chest is a naked as an egg. Unfortunately, it's also as concave as a collapsed lung. Still, I'm largely hairless ... well, except for the mole.

I may be the man for you. What are your views on small penisies and flatulence? I'm just asking; I'm not sayin' ...

Loz said...

holy fuck brooke.
you have me intruiged, and scared.

jiggs said...

I don't believe in vampires (apart from myself).

I like that picture of you with the tray of food. You so tiny I bet I could fit you in my pocket

Brookelina said...

Bill - you are adorable....but I'm thinking you need to work on your skills as a salesman.

Loz - I wish I could remember more about what we talked about with him. Damn wine.

Jiggs - it's the angle. I'm not all that tiny. Ok, maybe I was back then. No wait, I still am. tiny and adorable! Yes, that's me.

Think Frustrated said...

Brooke,

Great story. I know Jeffrey. He is kind of a wierd dude, but his claims of being a Vampire are totally unfounded. He is actually just a really wierd dude.

Think Frustrated said...

Brooke,

Great story. I know Jeffrey. He is kind of a wierd dude, but his claims of being a Vampire are totally unfounded. He is actually just a really wierd dude.

Think Frustrated said...

PS

Love your site. I'm linking you on mine.

Alistair! said...

I'm a pinhead and I exist!

none - ya said...

Gotta love the weird, mysterious, totally aware of their surroundings type of people. It's rare that you meet them, but you never forget them.

Bill said...

No selling skills? That may explain my brief telemarketing career.

Roberta said...

How have I not heard this story.......OK, I would have been creeped.

JJ said...

Why don't I remember this? And you made me sound like I was a girl or something. I do remember the bunkbed however.

thephoenixnyc said...

You're ver lucky to have escaped with your life.

Ahhh ohhhh vampires of Salzburg, ahhh ohhhhh.

The Dummy said...

Oooh, cool. Guess he doesn't eat pizza with garlic then?

Jaxe said...

I believe in vampires. Would you like to meet one? Invite me in.

Oh, and do you realize your stirrup-pants are tucked into your socks? *puke* See, THAT, is why I believe in vampires... they cull the herd's weakest fashionably-challenged members first....

*fangs*

j

jiggs said...

You're so tiny and adorable, I bet I could fit you in a coffe cup.

Brookelina said...

Think - you may be right. And thank you!

Alistair - nobody is saying that you don't baby.

Mac - I will never ever forget my Jeffrey.

Bill - exactly.

Bert - nobody back home was interested in any of my backpacking stories if there wasn't sex involved.

JJ - huh? What? Oh right! Yes baby. It was you. Always you.

Phoenix - see? My intriguing wasy saved my life. So I'm sure you will live to a ripe old age.

DD - not unless it's covered in blood, no.

Jaxe - this from the guy who posted a picture of himself shirtless - in stone washed jeans. Save your fashion criticism you whore.

Jiggs - I will love you and keep you and call you George.

kerri said...

Jeffrey sure has some sweet shades. (awesome story, btw.)

King of Cake said...

I am besotted and/or intrigued.

P.S. Did you eat any good pastries while rambling??

Michelle said...

This story is far too intriguing for its own good. In fact, I believe I am vastly intrigued by it.

Curioser and curioser!!!

sandra said...

Season 2 -- so Spike is a part of it. I just finished the episode where Angel goes apeshit after him and Buffy have sex. I was sad for her...but he is an absolute badass when he's Angelus.

And Spike...oh, Spike. There really is something about him.

Jaxe said...

Jaxe - this from the guy who posted a picture of himself shirtless - in stone washed jeans. Save your fashion criticism you whore.


Oh, as if you were looking at the jeans.... and stop clicking on that photo already... You IMP!

j

Brookelina said...

Kerri - thank you!

King - I love that you are besotted. I hope it's with me and not Jeffrey.

Michelle - I am very happy to intrigue you so. Very happy!

Sandra - When Buffy was doing him I was outrageously jealous.

Jaxe - you still want me.

King of Cake said...

I remain in suspense about the pastries.

Gwen said...

I'm jealous. Damn good story!

Weight Watcher said...

We all know the effects (and after-effects) of beer. But lifting a glass of cool liquid to your mouth on a scorching hot day, have you ever stopped to consider the processes and ingredients involved in making it? Well maybe not but here is the answer anyway!

Simply, beer is a fermented combination of water, barley, yeast and hops. The major variation in any beer is the type of yeast used in the fermentation process.

Let's look at the properties of this beverage.
Water is the main ingredient of beer. In the past, the purity of the water influenced the final result and was specific to the region of the earth from which it came. Today, water is filtered of these impurities, although pure water supplies are still ideally preferred by elite brewers.

Barley malt is an extremely important ingredient in beer as it is the main source of fermentable sugar. Many new breweries use barley malt extract, in either syrup or powder form, as this form ferments much quicker. It also contains many minerals and vitamins that help the yeast to grow.

Without yeast, beer would not exist. Yeast is a unique single cell organism that eats sugar and expels alcohol and carbon dioxide, two of the more recognizable ingredients of beer. Yeast comes in several variations, of which there are two major categories that determine the type of beer produced; Ale yeast and Lager yeast. If yeast alone were used the beer would be extremely sweet and therefore another ingredient needs to be added to reach the final product.

Hops are the flowers of the hop plant, a climbing vine plant that grows well in many differing climates. Hops contain acids which add bitterness to beer. Adding bitterness to beer helps to balance the sweetness, as well as acting as a natural preservative. Add more hops to the mixture and you will get a more bitter taste. This kind of beer is extremely popular in Britian and is simply referred to as "Bitter" (the original names are always the best!).

Variations of these ingredients create different tasting beers as well as having an affect on the alcoholic content.
When making your own beer many good resources are available which provide home brewing kits. It is important to read the ingredients of the packets in order to ascertain which has the best mixture according to your needs. One quick tip which many home brewers fail to adhere to is this: "Use fresh still water"!

Many have often sought information on how to make beer and the basic homebrewing equipment is not very expensive you can get what you need, for as little as $100.
In order to start making beer, you will need the following: A brewpot, Primary fermenter, Airlock and stopper, Bottling bucket, Bottles, Bottle brush, Bottle capper, and a thermometer.
In addition you can even use items from your kitchen to aid in the beer making. A breakdown of all the equipment is as follows: Brewpot A brewpot is made of stainless steel or enamel-coated metal which has at least 15 litre capacity, but it's no good if it's made of aluminum or if it's a chipped enamelized pot, (these will make the beer taste funny). The brew pot is used to boil the ingredients thus begins the first stage of beer making.

Primary fermenter

The primary fermenter is where the beer begins to ferment and become that fabulous stuff that makes you so funny and charming. The primary fermenter must have a minimum capacity of 26 litres and an air tight seal it must also accommodate the airlock and rubber stopper. Make sure the one you buy is made of food-grade plastic, as it wont allow the bad stuff in or let the good stuff out.

Airlock and stopper

The airlock is a handy gadget which allows carbon dioxide to escape from your primary fermenter during fermentation, it is this process that keeps it from exploding, but it doesn't allow any of the bad air from outside to enter. It fits into a rubber stopper, and is placed into the top of your primary fermenter. The stoppers are numbered according to size, so make sure you use the correct stopper for the correct hole

Plastic hose

This is a food grade plastic hose which measures approximately 5 feet in length. It is needed to transfer the beer from system to system, and it is imperitive that it is kept clean and free from damage or clogs

Bottling bucket

This is a large, food-grade plastic bucket with a tap for drawing water at the bottom, it needs to be as big as your primary fermenter, because you need the capacity to pour all the liquid from your primary fermenter into a bottling bucket prior to bottling up.

Bottles

After fermentation, you place the beer in bottles for secondary fermentation and storage. You need enough bottles to hold all the beer you're going to make, the best kind of bottles are solid glass ones with smooth tops (not the twist-off kind) that will accept a cap from a bottle capper. You can use plastic ones with screw-on lids, but they arent as good for fermentation and dont look as well.

Whether you use glass or plastic bottles, make sure they are dark-colored. Light damages beer, i would recommend green or brown bottles.

Bottle brush

This is a thin, curvy brush which is used to clean bottles because of the the shape of the brush it makes it very affective at getting the bottle spotless. We haven't even gotten into how clean everything has to be, but we will, and the bottle brush is a specialized bit of cleaning equipment that you will require in order to maintain your bottle kit.

Bottle capper

If you take buy glass bottles, you will need some sort of bottle capper and caps, of course, and you can buy them from any brewing supplies store. The best sort of bottle capper is one which can be affixed to a surface and worked with one hand while you hold the bottle with the other.

Thermometer

This is a thermometer which can be stuck to the side of your fermenter, they are just thin strips of plastic which are self adhesive, and can be found in any brewing supplies store, or from a pet shop or aquarium. Not everything costs money though even some household equipment can be used.

Household items

In addition to the above specialized equipment, you will need the following household items:
* Small bowl
* Saucepan
* Rubber spatula
* Oven mitts/pot handlers
* Big mixing spoon (stainless steel or plastic)
So there you have the ingredients and the method to make your home brew, all you need now is to get yourself a beer making kit and your on the way to beer heaven.
Bar equipment