That was Halloween!

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by Tim Burdick on 10 October, 2014

Everyone has vague memories of this time year. Bad weather. Candle lit graves. Each culture has different traditions and rituals. But, when I was kid, October was a wonderful magical mystery of shadowy creatures and invisible scares.

The Fall has its own dark magic. The witches time. The Full Moon illuminates empty corn fields. Cool winds make the sun set earlier and earlier. The dead trees litter crunchy brown leaves on the ground.

My neighborhood Windy Heights was on a hill, which had terribly strong winds. They raged, blustered against the front bay window, and rolled against the side of the house. As a kid, I thought the winds outside were only howling ghosts, who chased pets and ripped down tree limbs.

The only safe place was buried deep under the covers of my bed with my C-3PO and R2D2 alarm clock to keep me safe.

Halloween was a time of mischief. We had tikk tackers. In ski masks, kids would run around neighborhood and throw dry corn at your house in the dark. It rattled against the aluminum siding like machine gun fire or they covered your trees in toilet paper. Or they would take your scarecrow dummy and throw it in the basket ball hoop.

Our carved Jack O lanterns were retrieved each night from the front porch and kept safe until the following morning. This ritual started after an untimely death one year. When we returned home from a party, only to find smashed remains all over the driveway.

It was our favorite time of year. Chocolate and costumes. My mother was legendary for her homemade costumes. One year my older brother was a Jawa from Star Wars and another year, I dressed as a guy in a shower (an idea which I stole from Karate Kid).

Ah, the morning after trick or treating, eating candy bars while watching Saturday morning cartoons. Those were the good old days. Scary, but fun.

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