Nikki V. has Dracula in her Blood. Here’s Proof!
My family has a very colorful history.
When Halloween rolls around every year, I like to honor my lost loved ones. Halloween was also my grandfather’s birthday and my family would throw really fun dance parties, even on school nights. We never missed a celebration. Here is a photo of him dressed as Elvis in 2010.
Grandpa Mickey used to be a carnie. He was hired at a carnival to be the ‘Evil Knievel’ of sorts. He was basically the rodeo clown and would do all sorts of wild things. One time grandpa told me a story where he was dragged by a car with his bare butt on a trashcan lid...! I can’t make this stuff up.
My grandfather went on to start his own band. They were called The Mickey Bruso Trio, and grandpa Mick played the drums. Being an artist has its difficulties. The money wasn’t great, he was constantly working while grandma took care of the kids.
Now let me tell you about this fabulous woman: Mercedes Dracula.
What a name, right?! Her mother was born in Poland, her father born in New Jersey and lived near other Romani and Eastern European citizens.
Mary and Joe Dracula were their names. My grandmother grew up in Connecticut and would take the train to the N.Y.C. and New Jersey with her mother for work. My grandma also grew up in poverty trying to find any way to earn money. When they’d travel to the city, the Romani women taught her how to read palms. “Gypsies,” she called them.
Gypsy is one of those words I do not like to use, even if it is in my blood. I’m not here to talk about why I don’t like to use it. I just here to shed some light on the history of my family.
Grandma learned how to read palms at a young age, but here is the funny thing. She actually learned how to scam people. She was taught by the “Gypsy Women” to charge money for the fortunes and they were to make up a fortune and mark the hand with a red marker... get it? “Your Palm is... red.”
I know, it’s a crazy story and all of it is absolutely true. Here is my grandmother Dracula's birth certificate to prove it.
That's my grandma in the photos with the certificate. I miss her and my grandpa tremendously. I honor my lost loved ones every Halloween. It’s more important to me than Christmas or New Year’s. And it’s purely because of my colorful family history.