As a focus for scary stories the ghosts and gouls of Halloween are perfect. I love the idea of the dead haunting graveyards on all Hallows eve and can see why people would want to read about them, watch films and generally celebrate. I’m even taken with the idea of some sad ghost wanting to possess my body, to replenish his lifeblood, though I have little interest in erotic vampire fiction. I like stories that are weird or full of suspense, including ghosts and poltergeists but they are for all year round not just for 31st October.
I don’t think I’ve ever dressed up at Halloween, nor have I been to a party to celebrate. I’m not a party pooper and enjoy seeing people who’ve made an effort, but I don’t feel the need to join in. When my son was little we found costumes for him to wear, we held a party for he and his cousins and a couple of friends. We went trick or treating, but only to neighbours houses. We cut pumpkins and displayed them around the house, children love that kind of thing. Now, there are no children at home and so we can be Halloween free. Maybe
Halloween feels like a construct imported (not always well) from abroad- the USA to be presise. Maybe if I found myself in the USA at Halloween and experienced it there I’d feel different. But here in the UK it feels like we are not quite getting this thing right. From the end of August costumes, pumpkin sweet holders, plastic spiders and other stuff arrives in the shops. By the middle of September, the first pumpkins are appearing, but why? Unless they are small and are for cooking they aren’t going to last.
The very worst thing about Halloween is that once it is over, the shops try to make us think we are only days away from Christmas. Perhaps it’s best I don’t get started on that one!
Happy Halloween (in 6 days time)!