Happy Halloween

It’s the time for masks and costumes, for tricks and treats, for returning home with good stuff to eat.

I remember being a kid and walking around our neighborhood, my Dad with me and my brother as we knocked on doors, yelled trick or treat and had a candy tossed into our pillowcase. When we got home, we’d go through our bounty with excited glee, picking out our favorites, eating some then and saving some for later. My Dad would always want to share… My brother had the confidence to say no, whereas I was a pushover. Unfortunately we liked the same kinds of candy, almond joy, snickers, and anything with caramel, so I gave up handfuls. He was the one with the sweet tooth so I really didn’t mind so much.

That was a long time ago.

Today, I enjoy watching my grandkids prepare for a night of dress-up fun. They’ve just moved and their neighborhood holds a gold mine of goodies. There’s even a woman who holds a special event for the kids at her house. She hands out a special potion for adults to drink, while she tells the kids a story. I’m hoping to be part of it, but rain is falling and that slows up traffic so I might be late for the party.

It’s okay because I tend to look at it differently these days. Hallows Eve originated as a Celtic festival when costumes were worn to ward off ghosts. It was believed that Samhain ushers in the dark half of the year, and the veil thins, making it easier to connect with the dead. (Still is for those of pagan sensibilities.) It is cyclical in nature, and celebrated throughout the world with rituals that include feasts and gatherings.

Some suggestions on how to celebrate it other than knocking on doors and begging for candy? Nature walks. Decorating the house with jack-o-lanterns. Learning about your ancestral roots. Honoring those family members who have passed on.

However you observe it, I wish you fun. Samhain