Thieving monkeys and grumpy vice presidents in Transylvania

By Jane Wynyard – Poiana Brasov, Transylvania, 2005 Forget Dracula, vampires and werewolves. The most menacing creature you’re likely to encounter in Transylvania these days is a thieving monkey dressed in a blue suit that hangs around nightclubs. A resident at the ski resort of Poiana Brasov in the Southern Carpathian mountains, the jittery, red-eyed primate with the sharpest fangs in the business, is usually shoved by its Dracula-like owner into the arms of gullible and unsuspecting tourists. If you don’t pay the 150,000 lei (three pounds, fifty) for a photograph, the monkey bares his fangs, extends his long spidery[…]