I know, an old curmudgeon.
Yes I am one, but Halloween!
Really? a new import, demands with menaces.
It's not that I dislike everything to do with it; dressing up parties? Most kids enjoy dressing up and the ghosts and witches lend to creativity in the makeup department. It's fun
But encouraging children to walk the streets after dark (and Halloween is no fun in the sunlight) so it's always in the dark, knocking on people's doors, demanding sweets with menaces. I'm sure 99.99 reoccurring, children do not avenge themselves on us if we refuse to add to their rotting teeth, expanding waistlines or feed their -'me me' complex.
Told you I was a curmudgeon!
But to be absolutely honest I did do Halloween three times. And sort of enjoyed it.
A few years back I had just relocated the family to Lincolnshire, had a new abode built for us in a beautiful village, in a cosy cul de sac, of other self builds. Our end of the cul de sac when I moved in consisted of two houses and four bungalows, and many building sites. All of which, bar mine, consisted of young working couples and young children.
They played on the unmade road, played in each others building sites of gardens. They were nice kids and every day one or three or even five or six would come a visiting. Fascinated I think by our household of 'old' women. Of the guide dog and exotic looking cats. Of the old lady bedridden and dying, they would ask after our mother every day and hope she was alright that day. We'd stand around chatting, admiring their fancy flashing light trainers and the ribbons on their scooters, trikes and bikes examine their dolls in their prams.
I envy the clothes kids of today have so full of colour and fancies. Everything spring bright.
A couple of the older children borrowed books and my printer to print out colour photos of cars. In the way of children, they chatted innocently about their lives and dropped nuggets of home life into my ears. We all became, if not friends, more like surrogate grand-aunt and grand nephews and nieces.
The first year there I discovered their plans for Halloween. The little ones excited at their first one. They were going to come knocking at my door, not just mine, all the cul de sac. I warned the family we ought not turn of the lights and close the curtains this Halloween. I bought the sweets and we waited.
For the knock on the door.
They came with a parent hovering at the gate, far enough away to create 'grown-upness' and near enough for security. The kids dressed to nines as a vampire, a werewolf and a witch. There were cobwebs and spiders and blood dripping. Wigs and darkness with wicked red purple and brilliant emerald glitter. Make up liberally applied and masks for eyes to glitter behind.
I had promised my sister who had never seen Halloween costumes a vocal look at our visitors and as they stood by my door chanting trick or treat and trying out a few soft woos and ugs for a tentative scary effect. I made suitably frightened noises and told my sister in turn what these fearful beasts from hell looked like, which made the beasts giggle until I reached the witch, the smallest, and described how scary and fearful this witch was.
A tiny reassuring voice floated on the air between us
'It's alright Miss Ross don't be scared its me, Claudia. Look' and off came her mask.
As I said they were nice kids, more worried for me being scared than demanding her treat.
We kept Halloween at our house until they grew out of it, then the curtains were closed and the lights switched off, the car in the garage and peace reigned again for the curmudgeons at the end of the cul de sac.
Because I don't do Halloween:)