Monday, November 03, 2008

HALLOWEEN

This is the first year that the Bird went trick-or-treating. We made it to two houses. We went two doors west, and one door west, then he saw mommy on our porch and we were done. Of course, it takes him a while to get up a flight of steps, and I have to help down steps, so it was just as well.

What is really fun about Halloween in our neighborhood is all of the people who are experiencing it for the first time. We are across the street from a public grade school, and it draws a fair number of Latin and Central European immigrants. They don't have American Halloween in Latin America, Poland, or Romania. And you can tell. In addition, the school had some sort of event for the students that got out around seven, so lots of kids who didn't really live so close to our house trick-or-treated the block around school. Anyway, sights seen:
  • the kid who was wearing his Sunday best to trick-or-treat. I guess "you dress up for Halloween" is more ambiguous than we realize;
  • the parents who came up to the door with their kids and just stood there bemused as their kids got candy for nothing from complete strangers;
  • the kids who just stood there bemused as they were given candy for mumbling "trick . . ." under their breath in broken English;
  • the parents who had their own bags for candy; and my personal favorite
  • the parents who clearly had NO idea how much candy was involved, who did not have bags for them or their kids, and had shirtfuls of candy.
Honestly, it is a very sweet moment watching someone work out their firsts in America. It reminds me of when I lived in Germany and got up October 3, 1990 thinking it was a day like any other. By about 11:00 I realized that the entire city was shut down. No trams. No bars. No kiosks. No nothing. What the hell? It was Wednesday, for Chrissakes. Turns out that it was Tag der deutschen Einheit (Reunification Day), which was a new holiday for the Germans, but one they all stayed home for.

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