Halloween thoughts and autumn feelings

At this time of year I always get asked the question: “Was Dracula real?”

questionGrowing up in Transylvania, in a small town in the mountains, where old traditions are still preserved and even today, people gather and play cards in the graveyards on Easter night, definition of real has so many meanings.

As a child, when my grandmother was telling me that if I don’t come back before dinner time, the ‘strigoi’ will get me. Did I ever see one? Of course, with my imagination’s eyes, I can describe it even now. Was he real? My grandmother said so even if she could not really remember if she ever saw one.

bonesAnd then, as I grew up, there was “Zburatorul,” a being that, if I was not careful enough, would come to torment me at night with the pain of longing, the torture of being away from the loved one…we all know some aspects of this kind of pain and it’s so very real when we feel it.

painBram Stoker deserves the credit for somehow putting all these (and many more) together in one man he named Dracula.

Is there any connection between the literary character and the Romanian voivode, Vlad The Impaler who managed to keep the Ottoman Empire at bay in the sixteenth century? Maybe. They are both very powerful men and Vlad is mentioned even now by people in Romania as a hero, whom we would welcome anytime to come back and put things right in the country.

red castleDuring his time, his reputation as a just and decisive leader was so strong, that public fountains had golden cups (no one would dare to steal them) and no honest person would starve or lack a roof over their head.

blue castleSome described him as “no common man;” “the bravest of sons from the land beyond the forest;” “a mighty brain and an iron resolution.”

dark castleDoes that make him a vampire? Does this make him real?

How do you know something or someone is really real?

magic castleI am looking forward to the talk this Saturday in Dublin, as part of the Bram Stoker Festival, where a variety of people will be trying to search for meanings into one of the most fascinating characters, which have inspired so many people and who, in my opinion, for that reason alone, is as real as one can be.

Note: If you find yourselves in Avignon, France, make sure to go and see the night show at the Pope’s Palace (some of the photos are taken there) … and ask yourselves what is reality?

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How does it feel to be YOU?

I have left parts of myself in each corner of the world where I have travelled. The moment I stopped and fully realized I was THERE, a thin slice of my being got imprinted on that spot and in exchange, part of the energy that made that place unique, became part of me.

That’s how I became ‘me’ of today, from the multitude of vibrations I now carry, speaking to me of the places where my feet walked or my eyes admired.

If, one day, I could only photograph the images I carry in my heart of all these places, of all those faces, of my own soul smiling at the miracle of diversity that makes us all…

Autumn

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boat and glasses

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