Monday, October 31, 2011

A happy halloween to all

Since I no longer have kids at home--haven't for almost twenty years--I've let Halloween go. It's not much fun to do by yourself--or that's my excuse. Some years when the Frisco girls were young I went there to see them in their costumes; some years I've turned out all the lights and hibernated; for a few years the Texas Book Festival was on Halloween, and I was in Austin. We had a wonderful time--Melinda, KK, and I gave out treats in Megan's  yard while she and B took the boys down the street. But the last couple of years, I have a new tradition, thanks to my good neighbors, Susan and Jay. They enjoy Halloween--Jay particularly likes greeting each child, commenting on his or her costume, joking with the parents. He sits on their front steps with an enormous bowl of candy at his feet and doles it out. Susan has made delicious stew both years, so I simply put the dogs up, turn out all my lights, and go next door.
Kids come to our neighborhood by the thousands (almost literally)--the sidewalks are crowded, the streets are full of parked cars and some cruising slowly. Even after dark, the steady parade continues. I saw the biggest van I've ever seen across the street tonight. It's not a particularly rich neighborhood but as Jay says it's "Halloween friendly": the houses are close together and not set too far back from the street, and the residents (except me) open up their hearts, buy tons of candy, and turn on their lights. All of the children and their parents who came up the walk tonight were exceedingly polite, full of "thank you" and "Happy Halloween." At least half the parents were in costume, and some came carrying babes in arms sound asleep--hmmm, wonder who would eat that candy? I hope not the baby. In all the constant two-hour stream, we saw only one neighbor.
At eight o 'clock, Jay and Susan ran out of candy and turned out the lights. Jay walked me home since my house was so dark. But I am grateful to them for sharing the evening with me--it's not much fun to hide in your house with the lights out. And I'm grateful for the stew--I'd been wondering what to have for supper and was definitely in need of comfort food. Susan sent a goodly serving of it home with me for supper tomorrow night.
Other than that, it was a busy day--an appoinmtment with the audiologist at 8:15. Note to self: do not make such early appointments again. Quick run to the grocery and to drop off some books; then the podiatrist and on to the pet store, where I bought the rapidly growing Miss Sophie a larger crate, this time one of the open ones. I had thought I'd have to call Jay and ask him to get it out of the car and assemble it--but I did it all myself. Quite proud, if I do say so. But it was the easiest assembly I've ever seen. Sophie went in it for the first time readily and seems to like it. I think she likes seeing the world, and now I can drop treats to her through the top. It actually will be easier to travel with than the other one. This one collapses neatly, and Sophie now rides in the car with a harness attached to a seat belt.

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