Trick or Treat?
So Halloween is here once more. I've never quite understood Halloween, it was never a big deal when I was a child nor even when my eldest daughter M (Big M) was younger. There is no getting away from it now, there seems to have been a big commercial explosion of costumes, candy, decor, themed parties, school disco's and endless trick or treating.
If it's to mark All Saints Day the following day and dressing as devils, witches and ghosts to mock the underworld was the original idea, then I don't get why children dress as fairies, princesses, tv characters and such . Is it the market that has steered us away in that direction? More to the point why have I also been sucked up by the global money making event?
Youngest daughter, also M (Little M) has an action packed schedule to mark the occasion; 2 parties, school disco, trick or treating and Girl Scouts haunted house. She had to chose just two events; after all there is only one of her and only one of me, the taxi driver!
Whilst I recognise that North Americans have made a huge deal of Halloween long before us British I'm still curious as to why and how it's evolved as it has. Despite asking many friends, nobody can really answer and each one of us seems to busy ourselves with the whole thing whilst all the time we secretly we dread it (well, I do).
Penny For the Guy?
Bonfire night is in the same season. It comes straight after conker season, which comes after cricket season, which comes after football season..... - the kind of "season's" that means something to a child.
Fireworks, sparklers, Catherine wheels and hot cocoa, toffee apples, hot dogs and huge bonfires burning - the unmistakable smells of November 5th!
The old "Guy" made especially days before of old tights, stuffed with newspaper and dressed in your father's old working clothes, pulled or pushed around on a cart or in an old pram, until being thrown on top of a huge bonfire as the finale. Great fun and wonderful warm memories, despite standing around for hours in the cold asking for a "Penny for the Guy?". We didn't make any profit, pennies shared amongst us wasn't much even then! But much fun creating together as a group of friends - with no huge profiteering no marketing or consumerism involved.
So, are you....
"Trick or Treat, smell my feet, give me something nice to eat..."
"Remember, remember the 5th of November, gunpowder, treason and plot..."