Monday, November 4, 2013

Memories of Halloween The Book of Me Prompt #9

Some of the candy that I gave out this Halloween.


Hmm......I admit that I was scratching my head wondering how this came to be a prompt for the Book of Me. This is one of the holidays that really makes one wonder----where did this all come from?

Now, my memories from childhood Halloween outings are good ones, but I also have to admit that I began to enjoy the holiday more when I was the one coming to the door to give out candy, more than going from house to house. 

As a child, I can recall my mother working with my brother and me, making our own costumes. And we only went within about a 2-3 block area from my house. I usually wore a half mask, the kind that always limited my peripheral vision and had the cut out holes for the eyes, and the bridge of the nose. I recall usually getting a pink onem though one year I got one with lots of glitter on it.

After our trick or treating, my mother always had to inspect the candy, in case some evil soul was dropping razor blades in our bags or committing some other frightening deed. And of course all loose candy had to be tossed, though I always wanted the popcorn balls that the lady up the street, would give out. But by the time trick or treating was over, the popcorn balls were breaking apart, and they too got tossed.

However, by the time I was 10 or 11, I actually got bored with the trick or treating, and had more fun looking at the costumes of others and I remember telling my mom that I didn't want to go anymore, and so, I made a conscious decision that I would be at the door from that time forward. There was no real reason, but I guess I was always kind of an old soul, and found looking at the faces of the smaller children far more entertaining than getting candy, much of which I did not eat, anyway.

But then came my college years! Wow---what a surprise---I was dumbfounded to find out how many big kids----meaning folks my own age---were really into Halloween! I mean drop dead serious---from carving pumpkins to making truly elaborate get ups---serious costumes. I never had friends who were artistic, so I never knew people who were so creative with costumes. It was one of those things that still leave me a wee bit perplexed. The costumes I recall went far beyond just wearing a mask and some funny clothes---I mean people were insects, or inanimate objects that they wore to somebody's party. I guess it was a cultural thing---I just had never known folks who did this beyond childhood.

Adulthood came fast enough and once again--enjoying giving candy to children, I was stunned to find myself at a university where lots of colleagues took the day quite seriously. Several colleagues put lost of energy for days preparing for their day to come to work as a book character, or movie character, or even at times a biblical character.  I am always entertained by it, but still amazed at something that I still see as a fun thing for children, to be dabbled in as much as it is by adults.

Of course I have tried not to look to closely at the origins of the holiday, for it has a very dark and sinister origin. I take comfort in that it has morphed into something to delight the children.

And I guess Halloween is something where you make your own day of it, and for me, I find simple pleasure in reaching into my container of candy and distribute to the children, who seem so anxious to get the candies that await them.

1 comment:

Pam said...

I enjoy your blogs very much. You have a gift for writing and telling their stories and yours! There are many genealogy blogs out there, and I love reading as many as I have time for each day. I found your site by a google search of the surname, Walton. I look forward to new posts and have gone back and read older posts. Pam.