Wednesday, November 4, 2009

All Hallows Eve

I'd heard about Halloween in America, but now I've seen it for myself and I'm still boggling a bit. It's a big deal here, to the the extent that a special Halloween shop opened in our local mall and many local businesses sprouted a cover of cobwebs. House (and apartment) decorations are common, some hugely elaborate.

Apartment doorway in our complex
Enter if you dare!

The finest were in the up-market estate that Jac's boss John lives in, but I'm afraid we didn't get pictures of them. Think skeletons emerging from graves on the front lawn and giant rats crawling along the front fence. And pumpkins everywhere.

We went to to John and Joanne's for the evening. They supplied some dressing up material so that we could go out with our Jo, Marty Roo and a little Indian girl, daughter of one of the foundation's researchers.

Roo's first costume: a chilli
But he had a costume malfunction: every time he kicked his legs it burst open!

Glowbug: eventual costume for the night

Any costume will do
Kids in the street immediately identified me as....The Burger King!

Prof McGonigle
And her birthday flowers from John and Joanne

Most houses had their porch lights on, and when we knocked on the door the owners appeared, all smiles, and doled out candy in large quantities. Joanne had prepared 100 bags to give away to the trick-or-treaters coming to their house and most of those went during the evening.

Bags of candy for the Trick or Treaters

And here they come!

A modest haul of Halloween loot
Our little Indian friend is new to the US and more familiar with the Diwali festival

Most of the visitors were little tots with non-gruesome costumes, and parents not too far away, but there were gory adults too, and one party going on down the street with recorded groans and screams being broadcast to passers by.

It was something of a contrast the following day (Sunday) to go to church for a Day of the Dead service (Dia de Los Muertos). The congregation was encouraged to bring photos or cards of loved ones who had died, and they were all placed on a table at the front as an act of remembrance.

Remembrance cards at the Spirit of Peace Dia de Los Muertos service

More Dia de Los Muertos later this week when we go to a festival in town. Watch this space.


  1. Halloween USA style looks much nicer than in the UK. Its a festival that we dont encourage at No 170 as there is alot of bad spirits about. If no "Treats" are prduced be it on your own head and expect "nasties" thro the letter box. One year was particularly bad as we had very rotten apple through the door and chalked words all over the outside walls that would come off for months. So we now dont play, This year there were no callers in our area at all and few in this part of Bolton. Yours is much better.

  2. The trick part of it seems entirely extinct here, though I suppose the kids sing for their supper a little with their costumes.

  3. It was nice to catch up again. Must have been fun celebrating Halloween with the family, especially fun for the children. Loved the costumes, shame the chillie didn't fit master Roo.

  4. Belated birthday greeting for Granma.