Monday, October 31, 2005

Halloween Nostalgia

I was never the hugest fan of Halloween (except for the free candy, who can argue with that?), I don't really know why. Luckily, my friends swept me along in their enthusiasm. But now that I don't have it anymore, I miss it. Back home in DC, my Mom always turned Halloween into something special. Our yard was totally decorated, with cobwebs in the bushes and gravestones on the lawn. Our kitchen table was transported outside and my Mom set it with black and orange table cloths, complete with a dozen orange roses. To top it all off, my Moms friends and the neighbors would come over once it got dark, and sat outside with witch hats on and drank red tea and chatted, waiting for kids to stop by for their treats. Some barely dared to go up to them, they looked so spooky and mysterious sitting there, quietly sipping their tea on the front lawn. I am not sure how or when this tradition started, but I know I miss it. I haven't been a part of it for several years now, but this is the first year that my family isn't in DC for Halloween. I think the neighborhood lost their creepiest and most original Halloween trick-or-treating spot.

This is a picture of me eating outside on our front lawn, because the table had already been set up outside and I had nowhere else to sit :)

Halloween exists here in Austria, but it just isn't the same, at least not for me. Up until a few years ago, it was still practically unknown here. One can still feel that this is a foreign tradition here, that it was basically imported as a marketing concept. Some kids go trick-or-treating, some don't even know what Halloween is. College students love it because there are Halloween parties going on everywhere. Not to mention that it is very practical that November 1st is a holiday here, so everyone can sleep off their haunted hangovers. But getting wasted simply isn't what Halloween is about. On my way home from work tonight, the tram was hit by some eggs. I guess they've got the "trick" part down already. I can't really explain it, but I just don't feel the actual Halloween spirit here. Some acknowledge Halloween, some don't, some dress up, some don't, some give out candy, some don't, some play pranks, some don't. Everyone seems to just use it as an excuse to do whatever they want. Which can be fun in it's own way, but, like I said, it's just not the same as the Halloween I know and grew up with.

Nonetheless: Happy Halloween, everyone!

PS: I just remembered that one year I was a grannie, with two of my friends as my hippie grandchildren. And another year I was a secret service guy, ushering the rest of my friends through crowds in Georgetown, saying "VIP coming through, VIP coming through..." Hahaha, those were the days.

1 comment:

Angi said...

hehe, you should read my blog, I just finished my post and then I read yours. All I can say is: word!