My Big Gap Year: Gypsy Rose Tea

Despatches from Poppy Spalding

Thursday: Romania

Romania! The place to be seen for vampires and gypsies. In fact, Romania isn't full of men in fake Adidas tops playing accordions and misunderstanding the municipal refuse collection system. The Romanies are a fantastic race who really know how to do Halloween.

First off, some students I met in a bar invited me to a screening of vampire movies at the university. I went along but the movies were really bizarre: it seemed to be a battle between Grand Moff Tarkin and Count Dooku off Star Wars. You could totally tell they were wearing make-up in some bits. It's kind of a shame the Romanies can't afford to make vampire films as good as Twilight.

Then, one of the guys pulled out a bag of magic mushrooms and suggested we dress up as vampires and ring in Halloween at Dracula's castle. They didn't need to ask twice as I got wired into the freaky tea and face paints!

One of the girls had keys to a van and when we rocked up at Poeneri Castle it was pitch black and freaky as hell. Dracula could have totally been on Grand Designs.

There were like a million steps to the entrance but we never made it to the top because half way up, I realised someone had been touching my bum for like an hour. Then I realised that everyone was touching everyone else's bums and before I knew it there was a full scale vampire orgy! Everyone was bloodsucking and bum touching and I even got off with a girl! I felt just like Kilroy.

We then decided to go trick or treating in the village but the only place open was a bar full of farmers having a lock-in, drinking home brew and listening to Bad by Michael Jackson on repeat. At this point, the night sort of slipped down the booby shoot: the students started actually turning into Michael Jacksons and the farmers into the Jackson five, all trying to bribe me with Revels. I couldn't reason with them and escaped in terror to the mop cupboard. Thankfully, there I found a Bon Jovi poster from which I drew magical powers. Bon would surely protect me from the troop of evil Michaels and his creepy family. The last thing I remember was screaming  the chorus of Livin' on a Prayer at the top of my voice to show them I meant business.

I woke up the next morning in the cupboard with Bon up my jumper and a smiley face pattern of love bites on my bottom. Random!

Romanies are actually a totally misunderstood people. It doesn't matter if they get your fortune wildly inaccurate or suck all the blood from your body. They're not trying to kill you: they're just trying to leave cheery souvenirs on your buttocks. I suspect that if you're one of those people who hate Romanies, it's only because you've gone totally coco pops on hallucinogenic drugs.