Waiting for Halloween

When I was a kid (which admittedly was some five decades ago), here in Britain (at the time I lived in Manchester), this time of year meant Bonfire Night: collecting material for a bonfire, building a guy, collecting money for fireworks and then – on the night itself – the bonfire, the fireworks, toffee apples and parkin cake.
By the time my son was a kid (some three decades ago), Bonfire Night was already being challenged by the celebration of the more American festival of Halloween which I guess really took off in Britain with the success of the film “ET”. In those days, we had abandoned the idea of a bonfire, but I collected money from the neighbours with children, bought a special set of fireworks, and then set them off at a street gathering in circumstances which I hoped were safer and more fun than individual household displays.
Now we then lived – and still do – in north-west London which has a large Asian population and the celebration of the Hindu festival of Diwali in late October usually meant at least as many fireworks in the area as Bonfire Night in early November. Meanwhile Halloween has become more and more popular and one can see why – no dangerous bonfires and fireworks, an excuse to dress up and knock on neighbours doors, and lots of treats.
As far as our cat Honey is concerned, late October and early November is one long nightmare in which Diwali, Halloween and Bonfire Night just run into one another as a set of unpredictable loud noises. But Vee and I have bought lots of treats for the local kids and are ready for them …


  • Irish Gifts

    I really look forward to Halloween. In our little neighborhood, its a lot of fun, and the festivities ensure that both the kids and adults have a great time. I often think of it as a holiday, but one that is without the pressures of cooking large family meals, entertaining, etc. We’ve got it set-up as very much of a communal thing.

  • Mavis Smith

    At ages,70 (just able to walk to the door) and 79 – tired from helping me. By the time its get dark, the last thing we want is the doorbell ringing constantly.
    Notices asking people not to knock as we are pensioners. Only lead me to believe that schools do not teach either the adults or the children to read.
    Me I am grumpy.


XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>