'The creature bent over the young woman, whom its red bloody eyes put into a trance. The Count’s mouth opened and snapped shut in a deep kiss on her neck. His teeth felt the soft skin and went in through it like a hypodermic needle. The woman writhed and moaned in ecstasy.The Count drew in the young blood for a while and held back his mouth. Blood dripped from his reddened mouth and lips. The girl was still in the trance he flung her. Dracula beamed in maverick smile and mused in content and surveyed around ,his eyes darting like that of the he wolf that drank to its heart’s content’
The Vampire story with the eponymous antagonist Dracula must have descriptions like these. Though I do not remember the exact words and sentences Stalker used to describe the ritual of the Count Dracula.
I happened to hear on the regional FM channel the social advert meant to encourage blood donation. The feminine voice that exhorted the virtue of donating blood, took me back into many years in the past. With all respect to the solemn virtuous deed of blood donation and without any disparaging intent let me narrate some experiences with blood donation.
The Count Dracula story was only the visual symbol of the abstract idea that came to my mind from experiences long ago. The difference was that the Count was a petite paramedical nurse and the sting of the Count’s sharp tooth was the piercing of the syringe fitted with a thin, sharp steel needle which went through the outer layer of the skin and into the vein; blood of teenaged and youthful red exuberance gushed out first in a torrent and then dripping down gently into the glass bottle!
The display of virtue, though for a token consideration was not to be publicised at that period in time. So there was a lot of stealth and secretive planning that preceded the transfusion at that private laboratory. There was in fact nothing resembling moral excellence in that transfusion of blood. It was not donation ‘per se’. The consideration was Rs 20, as the blood filling up the glass bottle being RH positive.It would fetch Rs 40 for the blood with RH factor negative.
There was no ecstasy that the pretty lady lived through when the Count Dracula bent over her and punctured his sharp teeth on to the side of her neck. This was an anxious feel of getting done with the procedure, pocket the money and slither out hoping to be not noticed by the gentry in the city to whom I was familiar to.
The extraction ritual in the little room of that laboratory got over in even time. And the lass who conducted the transfusion ensured that I lay on the cot for a while. Later she gave me a glass of fresh lemon with liberal additive of glucose and a few cream biscuits. There was no signing of vouchers and I pocketed the twenty Rupees and slid out to walk the few meters to the bus station.
All avenues that were lawful and unlawful were exhausted before some of us decided on this new means of pocketing some money for mundane indulgence like, having a coffee and vada, a few chapattis and the infamous, but tasteful beef curry at the college canteen, or a ‘Charms’ cigarette and spending on tickets to the favourite Hollywood films that were invariably released on all Fridays at the Sreekumar /Sreevisakh movie theaters.The exercise that fetched “blood money” went on over a few times over a period. It sometimes gave a feeling of chivalry to us who struck upon the idea. We even joked on it as the symbol of “Eucharistic liturgy”.
Since it has passed three decades after those eventful days, I guess that there may not be something inappropriate in mentioning the end story which became a sorry saga and the name of one of the artist. Rajan was a boisterous, trouble shooter, both in the confines of his home or out at the college or elsewhere. He had the denseness of mischievousness that one will be surprised to see, concentrated in one person and always displayed in his fair chubby face. The movie was releasing through its first exhibition on that afternoon and we took the bus straight from the laboratory. We managed to be very early in the queue for tickets and ensured that we did not miss out the first days first filming. While we were in the queue waiting for the counters to open Rajan got embroiled in the most stupid of all indulgence. Hearing the violent cacophony we looked around and saw that he was into fist fights with a group of gamblers who were squatting nearby. They were fooling people to throw money into a game of dice promising a win of three or four times the sum that was put in. This idiot put all his “blood money’” into the game and lost squarely. Rajan was standing a cropper and he tasted his own blood!