Thursday, October 31, 2013

The joy of children

Once again I spent Halloween on my neighbors' front porch--I don't like to be home alone giving out candy. Besides, they traditionally make a wonderful stew for supper. I contributed a pumpkin dessert dip that was pretty darn good if I do say so. So we sipped wine, ate well, and watched Jay give out treats to a constant stream of children and not a few adults.
Ours is one of those neighborhoods known for its generosity, so families comes from all over the city to trick or treat. It's a pleasure to watch most of them--the parents are watchful, prompting for that thank you and cautioning, 'Only one piece." The children are polite a few with a quick quip. My recognition of a Minecrafter figure impressed Jay--he had no idea what the kid was supposed to be. We were all impressed with the amount of parental work that had gone into the costumes, like the Minecrafter or the child who was an X-Box or something with a big box over his head topped with sparkling lights and a clear panel for his face. Best line of the evening came from an adult dressed as a banana. When Jay complimented him, he asked, "Did you find me appealing?" Sent us into giggles. Maybe the best adult costume was the woman who wore a sign around her neck--clearly an enlargement of the Heinz Mustard label--and a homemade headdress that looked like the squirt end of a mustard bottle.
The little children are amazing--some so determined they walk right up, others so shy they hang back. Many infants in mom's arms--clearly they wouldn't, or shouldn't, get any of those treats. One tiny tyke kept wandering off into the garden and had to be physically returned to the walk. A middle school girl, asked what she was dressed as, replied, "A nerd."
By 8:15 we were out of candy. Jay figured he and Susan and given out $200 worth of candy (I contributed about $25 to that total). Susan's dad and I, being the old folks, sat back and let the two of them do the work. But it was fun. At nine, the streets are still crowded, and Sophie is barking her head off about all those intruders. She's sure we're under attack. I haven't turned the porch light on yet, but do have some inside lights on. Poor Sophie--I meant to crate her and put her outside a bit before I was going to go, but then Susan came to see where I was and I left Sophie out--indeed, forgot her. She survived nicely, though I do worry about pets on Halloween. I've never heard of any malicious mischief in this neighborhood.
It was a nice relief to a tense day. My cell phone barely rings, and if I were to call you, you could barely hear me. It's either repair or upgrade, and since I'm eligible I decided to upgrade. Spent at least two and a half hours on the Web and then the phone with AT&T. Their web site kept giving me incomprehensible messages--200 MB version wasn't available. So what? I was requesting 300 MB! Three techs tried to get me through it, then transferred me to the phone where I learned, belatedly, that Apple has not released that many iPhone 5s to AT&T and the local store could only provide me with 64 GB--I don't need that much and don't need to pay $200 more for it. Finally ordered it through Apple, which was less complicated but still a lengthy process. I can pick it up tomorrow, but apparently tomorrow is a launch day for an iPad upgrade and the store will be a madhouse. Hate this kind of frustration.

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