It's raining a bit -- just like it did every Halloween when I was a kid, or so it seemed. It's almost 8:30 pm and we have had a grand total of six kids come to the door. That's a far cry from a few years ago, when the candy flowed nonstop. I'm not sure if it's the rain, our pumpkin-less doorstep, or a decline in the tradition.
Could a little of all of them, I suppose.
When I was kid, Halloween was definitely a nighttime activity. We got home from school and promptly began preparing for the big score. There were lots of kids in my neighborhood and plenty of homes to hit. Mom took the opportunity to make stew for dinner and insisted that we eat before the festivities began.
Stew. Ugh. I hated it. It was the only night of the WHOLE ENTIRE YEAR that Mom made stew and made us eat it. But we did, or we didn't get to go raid the neighborhood and divest the neighbors of candy.
Off we went, up down one side of the street and up the other, from the railroad tracks on one end to the graveyard on the other. When we got a bit older, we headed for the Apartments -- a small enclave of townhomes in back of our immediate neighborhood. Lots of homes equals lots of candy in our paper bags.
And not only candy, either; we also got homemade cookies, popcorn balls, and even tiny loaves of bread. The candy was full-size too; none of this "snack size" nonsense! We didn't worry about poisoned treats or sabotaged apples, although we'd heard the horror stories of needles in candy bars and razor blades in apples.
Of course the real fun started when we got home. My sister and I got to stay up late because November 1st was always a holiday. (In the Catlick Choich, All Saints' Day was a Holy Day of Obligation and we had to go to Mass. A small price to pay for no school.) We emptied out our bags and the hard bargaining began. Five pieces of Double Bubble for one Clark bar; two Hershey bars for a Mounds and an Almond Joy. You take those nasty cookies and I'll take your licorice.
It was great!
Anyway, I'm a little disappointed with the low turnout. I do enjoy seeing the spacemen and mini-monsters, the princesses and the superheroes. Then again, more candy for me!