Saturday, 2 November 2013

This is Halloween, This is Halloween

I have to say that the best thing about Halloween are the families that go all out, and decorate their homes like an amusement park.  You know the houses...the ones that your kids tell you that you have to visit on Halloween night.  Even though the kids are exhausted, and even though the people might not be handing out candy anymore, we still visit the best homes in the neighborhood at the end of our rounds.  There was one this year that was quite outstanding and it all happened over night.  On the 30th of October there were merely a few fall leaves on their front yard.  By 6pm on October 31st, it was this...

They built a full fence around their property with weather worn barn-boards.  They had corns stalks, hay bales and hand carved pumpkins everywhere.  There were scarecrows and grim reapers.  They even had an industrial fog machine that gave the whole property an eerie atmosphere once it got dark and the lights went on.  My children just loved this house.  It was their favorite house of the night.  And I have to say that it was mine too.  The people who live there have been doing this since they moved into the neighborhood six years ago, and all of the kids in the area look forward to see what they have planned every Halloween.  You can see how much this family likes Halloween by how much care they put into decorating their house for Halloween.  

The families that go to the expense and effort to decorate their homes to make Halloween night a memorable event for the kids, are what really makes Halloween one of my favorite holidays.  On the flip side, there are the Halloween Grinches that really can take the fun out of the evening.  Now before you react, please understand that I am not talking about people who just don't celebrate Halloween.  I am perfectly ok with that.  I am talking about the vertically challenged barbarians that go running about on Halloween without a care for protocol.   Really?  There are only a few simple rules...

1. Wear a costume. This is non negotiable. 
2. Ring the doorbell once and only once. You should not be trying to play Bohemian Rhapsody on the bell
3.  Greet the person who opens the door.  You can say "Happy Halloween"  or "Trick or Treat" or even just "hello"...don't just open your bag and grunt
4.  After the person puts the candy in your bag you say "thank you" because you are after all getting free candy

I don't know if I am just getting crabbier as I get older, but I have been developing some pretty well-defined pet peeves about Halloween...  

  • It feels weird going to a house that has their front lights on, but they don't answer the door.  If your front porch light is on, we will ring your bell.  
  • I really don't like it when to Teens come to my door without costumes.  I don't mind giving candy to teens, but teens please at least attempt to make sort of costume, or at least give me a song and dance.  
  • I am bugged by parents who carry their infants door to door and neither is wearing a costume.  This is purely a candy grab.  Not nice.  
  • And last but not least...children who don't bother to say "thank you." Last year I only had 2 children out of about 50 say thank you.  This year none.  \
Halloween should be fun, but that doesn't preclude some common sense with a dash of manners.  How were kids in your area?  How many thank you's did you get?