For blog followers and monster fans outside the U.S., the long Memorial Day weekend at the end of May is the unofficial start of summer in the States. In New York, it signals the beginning of summer in ways that are both concrete and ephemeral. The city’s beaches open. That means employment for lifeguards and that’s important given the number of non-swimmers, and worse, the number of swimmers who overestimate their strength. It also means the beginning of ‘casual Fridays’ in offices, the weekly mass exodus to the Hamptons and Jersey Shore, and the influx of tourists from all over the country. It’s the beginning of the silly season, when half price sangria takes on a particular appeal and the need to know the location of ‘unpopular rooms’ in the Met Museum reaches the critical stage.
As usual, my head is full of escape plans — London in June, Martha’s Vineyard in July, Berlin in August, Amsterdam in September… But this is a ‘stay-cation’ summer for me. I plan to spend the season working on my MONSTERS and enjoying the tourist destination where I happen to live. I’ll go to the theater, museums, parks and all the places I think about, but always seem too busy to visit. Making my own plans has naturally brought me to the question of MONSTERS and their holiday plans.
Does the Loch Ness Monster yearn for a little ocean swim? Would a werewolf visit London? He could follow the trail in Warren Zevon’s famous song the way I took the ‘Jack the Ripper’ walking tour on one of my trips to London. A lonely immortal being might also want to look up some old friends, or at least their headstones, at the Highgate Cemetery — another place I’ve visited.
A vampire wouldn’t plan a beach holiday, or would he? I’m picturing a lonely, pale and very handsome man who comes out to socialize at the bars and nightclubs at a Caribbean beach resort after the spectacular sunsets. The constantly changing population of resort visitors would make it easy for him to ‘feed’ on strangers and the locals would view him as an eccentric, rich guy with an allergy to the sun. I’m picturing it right now. He lives in a castle-like house on a hill. It’s the only place on the island that doesn’t get swept away during a hurricane.
‘Holidays for Monsters’ — if I don’t have a new calling as a travel agent, at least I have some ideas for stories.