For some reason, I have that Christmas song in my head that starts with, “So this is Christmas…” I think it’s John Lennon and Yoko? Anyway, I keep singing, “So this is Halloween..”
I have always loved Halloween. My 7th grade boyfriend, who was VERY deep by the way, once said to me, “I love the atmosphere of Halloween. I love the feel.” And he hit the nail on the head for me. And I love the spirit. (not spirits plural) I have always loved Halloween in movies because it seems bigger than in real life – crowded streets, children shouting, doorbells ringing left and right. Maybe it’s because I grew up on the very top of a mountain and lively Halloweens were more of a valley thing. Our houses weren’t too close together and there were so many forests and streams and fields where I grew up. Halloween was active for us, but separated.
My last three Halloweens in New England have been like the movies. Two years ago, we had just arrived in western Mass and we went to the Conway haunted house. They kept talking about their TOTALLY frightening and horrifying monster that they kept in the last room of the house and when we got there, a totally well-acted Sarah Palin came out and started spouting nonsense. Then we all gathered in the town square and had doughnuts and cider. The whole town was there and even in a small town, everyone in one space feels very alive and “like the movies.” And my body was holding a secret that night that I wouldn’t even know about for another few weeks. A baby.
Last year we walked the town as Han Solo, Princess Leia and Chewbacca and the streets were crowded with familiar and unfamiliar but friendly faces:
I remember that the shops kept giving us candy but Scarlet was not even four-months-old and I felt badly for taking their candy…since it was so obvious we were going to eat it.
And this year, I felt a lot less badly but I’m still going to eat her candy and not let her eat it! I gave her the smallest piece of a Hershey bar after dinner tonight and it got smeared onto her face, hands and highchair. And she was asking for MOOOORE. No. She was growling and throwing a fit for more. Ah, sugar.
This Halloween weekend was a blur of fun, sugar and color. It’s an interesting year. She’s still young enough to not truly know what’s going on. And she’s young enough that we can still choose her costume for her and eat her candy. However, she is old enough to dance in the grass in her polar bear costume. She’s old enough to throw words at us…to tell us about the things she’s experiencing that she can now communicate – “Doggy!” “Water!” “Cookie!” “Bear!” And it is totally fun to be a parent this time of year because the holidays have a rich new meaning…and they already meant a lot to me to begin with.
I don’t have the energy to go through a play by play but the weekend was very meaningful. I loved running through a friend’s backyard with a bunch of cool, excited kids who were up past their bedtimes and I felt the excitement they felt to build a fire and eat cookies. I loved playing catch and tag in the fall night air. I loved roasting hot dogs over a fire (I still smell like smoke) and getting to know new neighbors and talk about their baby-to-be. I loved seeing Scarlet grin at our special friend/neighbor and nearly fall asleep in her arms. It’s because she felt safe in those arms and we felt safe for her to be in them. I love neighbors. I loved trick or treating and getting that greedy rush of “more! more! more!” energy even though I have never in my life finished all of my Halloween candy and I certainly won’t this year. And I loved gathering in the town square of Florence and marching amongst some of the most creative Halloween costumes I’ve ever seen, on children and adults alike. I especially loved giant moose antlers fashioned out of a recycled pizza box and a whole family of blue whales.
I could write about it all, the whirlwind and the magic, but I’ll choose instead to show you the spirit, the feel, and the atmosphere of it:
Oh, and we’re from “Lost.” Cassidy and I are loosely representing the Dharma Initiative. Loosely, because I’m sort of Kate and sort of Juliet and sort of Hurley. And Cassidy is sort of Desmond. (hubba, hubba) And Scarlet is not sort of, but is most definitely, our island polar bear:
True “Lost” fans will understand this one:
(I snuck into a few pictures)
Well. That about says it.