Garden in North Vancouver all tricked out for Halloween
Garden in North Vancouver all tricked out for Halloween

I don’t really get halloween in Canada. Of course we did not have halloween in England – only a pale and uninteresting version of it ever made it across the pond. But here in Canada it is BIG.

Many homes have some halloween decorations outside – perhaps a pumpkin or three. Or some witch or scarecrow stood up by the door. All these are signals that the trick or treaters are welcome. But some people really go overboard on decorating their homes. The whole front yard becomes a graveyard, with headstones, witches, skeletons and the like arranged tastelessly around. Many have lights at night – that enhances the ghoulish experience.

One of my friends has a place that she’s been tricking out for days. Her husband does the lighting for rock bands but they still have to hire in extra lights and props. They have painted drop cloths that cover the whole front of the house turning it into a castle.

This is supposed to be for kids. And mostly it is. But adults seem to get a real thrill out of the whole thing. It is cute to see the little trick or treaters out on the 31st (and they don’t go out on other days). But adults and older kids will also have parties. Spending time and effort on the perfect costume.

The strange thing is the way such ghoulish themes – witches, monsters, ghosts and skeletons – are treated as normal. Kids see them everywhere. In the hospital wards, even the acute care wards, there are skulls and skeletons cheerfully adorning the walls. I guess it is not horror if it is so common place.

Enjoy you halloween candy.

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