Daisy Bateman

Vampires? In San Francisco? Booooo*

So, my friends Ben and Beverly got married last weekend. And it was lovely wedding indeed, with activities spread out over four days. I assume they are spending their entire honeymoon sleeping it off.

Anyway, the first event I was involved in was Ben’s bachelor party, held on Saturday night. It was not exactly deboucherous, inasmuch as the guest list included several female friends and the groom’s dad, but it was fun. We had a nice dinner at Buca di Beppo, and then we went on a “Vampire Walking Tour of Nob Hill”. Now, I have lived in the Bay Area my whole life. I have quoted and heard the famous Mark Twain quote about summers in San Francisco so many times that any mention of the fog provokes a Pavlovian recital of it. So, armed with this knowledge, what did I wear for an evening of walking around one of the coldest, windiest, hilltops in the city? Did I perhaps were a sundress, sandles and a lightweight jacket? Yes. Yes I did.

So I was cold. And since I have very poor circulation, when I get cold I get something I lovingly refer to as “corpse fingers”, which is when all of the blood retreats from my fingers, leaving them stiff and dead-white. Which means that I was actually the creepiest thing about the tour.

Our guide was a woman of early middle-age, dressed all in black (with a nice warm cloak), with her face painted white, her hair died black, sparkly fake eyelashes and a canvas tote bag with Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer on it. She claimed to be “Mina” from Bram Stoker’s Dracula, the credibility of which was somewhat spoiled by one of her friends calling her “Kitty”. Also, she occasionally said things like “anyhoo”. Her bit was that there was a whole community of vampires living under the city, and she mixed the vampire stories in with actual San Francisco history. Which made for a kind of odd effect; you would be going along, listening to a story about the 1906 earthquake, when all of a sudden, vampires! Then more history. Also, she told us some of her vacation stories, and about a show she saw on tv the other day.

The tour actually covered about a two-block radius. We would go to a place, stand there while our guide told us some stories, then move on to the next site, sometimes as much as fifty yards away. But it was all good, because afterwards we went to the Tonga Room, where we ordered silly drinks with umbrellas in them, and when I left (early, because I had to catch BART before it went out of service), I got to walk through the Fairmount and pretend like I belonged there, and have the doorman call me a cab. While I was waiting, we talked about the weather. It does get cold in San Francisco in the summer.

*This title is likely to only make sense to people who have lived in the Bay Area for long enough to remember a certain ad campaign, and who have very low standards for humor.

2 thoughts on “Vampires? In San Francisco? Booooo*”

  1. As a fellow participant in the tour, I would like to add the following: Brr….Shiver….What is up with this restaurant story? Why is it not over? Brr…Pretty lights… Brrr…Ooo Tonga Room! That is the level to which my brain froze. I, too, have lived in S.F. for a while and I did not know that a July night could get quite that chilly.


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