I remember Mrs. Cosman, who lived behind the school, giving out candy apples, and my mom driving us over to Nana and Poppa's so they could see our costumes. I remember the last time I went trick or treating with my friends, no parents, and getting lost in an unfamiliar neighbourhood as wet snow began to fall, and, a little older, watching Halloween over and over on Pay Per View, in the dark. I remember how my mom always had two bowls of candy: in one, the good stuff reserved for the little kids; in the other, packages of gum for the older kids.
Hay rides, haunted houses, heavy wool sweaters: all these memories come from Ontario, from my childhood and teenage years. Here in the Yukon, the rustle of fallen leaves underfoot has long been replaced by the crunch of snow: there is a foot of snow outside now. All of the things that I associate with this time of year are buried, muffled by snow. This is not the descent into winter: we are already well into that season. Even after almost 10 years here, I still struggle to incorporate these wildly unbalanced seasons into my psyche.
I don't feel particularly festive today. My kids are not dressing up. The logistics of going to town just to collect candy I don't want them to eat are too great for me. I worry I'm depriving them of some essential part of childhood, but then again, they're young still. Perhaps a bonfire tonight in the yard, if we can uncover the fire pit.
Do any of you mark this day with something other than costumes and candy? I'd love to hear what this time of year means to you!