What happened to the days of all the neighbor and church kids riding in my dad’s trailer as he pulled us around the neighborhood with his tractor and we went house to house and collected tons of candy. We knew every house in the neighborhood, all within a two or three mile perimeter of my Mom’s house. It was a glorious night of trick ‘r’ treating. We awoke to streamers of toilet paper in our trees and smashed pumpkins in the front yard.
I remember it raining one year and my Mom still took me out in the car door to door to the nearest neighbors who knew we’d come by. I remember a group of us kids and parents walking our streets for several hours one year collecting treats.
Years later in middle school I held a sleep over with two of my friends. We wore masks and had a mini haunted house in the front yard and gave out candy. Then, we stayed up late watching scary movies. We snuck out with a roll or two of toilet paper and rolled my own yard.
In high school, I stayed home and gave out candy and counted the number of trick ‘r’ treaters that came by. Entire church vans of kids pulled up and got out because everyone still knew everyone in the neighborhood.
As an older teen, I went out with other high school friends and rode around town. We stole a scarecrow and rolled yards of people we didn’t know.
In college, I always went out to clubs for Halloween Costume contests. I never won, but it was still fun to dress up and go out dancing all night.
For the past 3 years, I’ve put decorations out and gave out candy. We had about 25 or 30 kids stop by. We still don’t know any kids in our neighborhood to this day. Last year, we only saw about a dozen kids. With anticipation of Halloween being on a Saturday this year, I bought 9 bags of candy and put out my decorations early in the month. I even bought more decor today at the store because it was all 50% off. I rushed home to add the finishing touches on the yard. We ate dinner early so I could sit outside and pass out candy.
It’s now 8pm and we’ve had eight kids come by. The streets are empty. There are no cars. Half the street has its lights out. I’m so disappointed. And so I sit here and wonder why there’s no knock on the door, awaiting the Roseanne Halloween marathon, making coffee, and wondering what the heck I’m going to do with all this candy.
Despite the economy woes, and swine flu, and Halloween urban legends involving fruit and razor blades, I just wish Halloween could still be like the ole days.
Oh wait, there’s a knock at the door….