it’s that time of year again, when goblins big and small roam the streets
haunting us for treats as a payoff for not playing tricks
to add to the oddity of the holiday, in our city trick or treat is not on halloween, but on the sunday before (i know, don’t get me started; some years we are handing out candy six days before the holiday, grumble, grumble).
for two hours we are inundated with all manner of costumed creatures, traipsing up and down the block—we love it. the kids like our house well enough, but they love our neighbor bret’s house.
well, who wouldn’t?? it’s AWESOME.
first of all there’s bret, who stands outside all day to greet new arrivals. actually, bret spends part of every day outside talking to passersby—that’s just his way. he’s our mayor, so to speak.
every character, from the gently swaying friendly ghosts that hang at baby backpack height
to the ghoulish and gory stuff placed further down
is set there to thrill, scare, and entice the neighborhood kids.
bret’s house is where it’s at for the whole month of october—they can’t get enough of it.
and he enjoys it as much as the kids do—every year he creates a different arrangement of the previously-used stuff
and then he adds something new. this year is was a remote control rat that ran out of his curbside plantings and into the path of parents
causing them to scurry for safety while himself roared with laughter each and every time. he cracks us up that way.
my favorite new thing is this skeleton that appears to be climbing out of the climbing porch vines
but i’m also super-smitten with the decorations up on the porch itself, like this crazed bat troll that hangs from his feet over the stoop
and this hairy spider on the bench, hee-hee.
ok, now, are you ready to take a nighttime tour? i know you’ve been waiting.
night is when the scene over there comes alive, with lights everywhere and little ghosts appearing out of the dark to bob around your head
strobe lights on the porch and uplighting at lawn level are magnified by strategically placed mirrors so that the whole scene flashes and glows as if it’s being viewed form the very pit of hell.
bret doesn’t miss an opportunity to make it as real as possible—none of these items are treated like props. if you peek inside a box
or behind a tattered skirt
you’re going to see that thing you are dreading
maybe coming right up out of the ground near your feet.
if you dare to venture up the walkway, you’ll be further spooked by the presence of things you probably didn’t even notice in the daylight—like the creepy ghoul that lives in the outhouse
or the lost and wandering ohio state fan who somehow got trapped forever in bret’s halloween tableau
relegated to a fate worse than death?
hmm, maybe not—the kids, after all, love it
in the light, the spider web glitters with something sticky, while a nearby dark force hovers at the edge of those climbing vines along with the skeleton, waiting to pounce and grab
back on the front sidewalk, a last look reveals heads on stakes behind the central grouping of figures, shudder.
yes, better to back away and look at it all form a safe distance, like from the warm, bright inside of my own locked house.
happy halloween everyone!