Thursday, April 9, 2009

[2002] Year Without A Haunt

2002 was a year I opted out of doing my yard haunt. I think it was a transitional period of wanting to enjoy Halloween from the non-haunter's point of view. Maybe it was a subconscious way of me knowing that my haunt was going to grow in intensity the following year, and for all of my remaining Halloweens. Not really sure. I DO know that I needed the vacation and the Universe paid off in full - I ended up by chance walking through a borough of a colonial town. I was about to see how they spent their Halloween night. It was a sleepy little street of single homes and cobblestone sidewalks. I'd describe the experience as magical, and it might sound like I'm embellishing the event. Every single porch had at least one jack o'lantern blazing. The residents were giving out treats from their porches, sitting in chairs or on porch steps. Treats were impressive, bundled and homemade. Hot cider at one house from a lady dressed as a witch. Laughter was everywhere. Adults catching up with their neighbors while their children ran around unattended. Strings of orange lights in windows. Cornstalks on bannisters. The finest house had a small circular table out front - a woman dressed as a fortune-teller, hands hovering over a real crystal ball, handing out a tiny written fortune with each treat. And this is the finest part of the story - due to the incredible amount of jack o'lanterns smiling and frowning their finest stuff, the air on that perfect little street smelled of toasted pumpkin.

Almost seven years ago. It's been a warm thought each year as I hand out my own treats on Halloween night, knowing that those neat folks are doing their thing and making Halloween truly Halloween.

Image source.


Bob said...

Hey Rot, LOVE the site. Check it every day on RSS.

Did you ever make it back? Hopefully the mood and spirit hasn't changed in 7 years time. Where was this place?

Rot said...

Thanks, man.
Appreciate it.

I walked through the area and snapped some pics in the middle of October, but I'm glued to my haunt on Halloween night so it'd be impossible to ever see that place in person during trick or treating hours. The decorations seemed the same, so I'm thinking all is well on that street. It's in Newtown, PA. Liberty Street to be exact.

Here's the blog entry where I snapped those pics two years ago:

Anonymous said...

sounds like it was the most perfect place. i would love to see it. wish it was like that everywhere else on halloween night.
word verification: BUMBUMP!? HAHAHA!

Judy C said...

Your description makes the whole event sound so special. It's lovely to be able to keep those things in our minds and revisit them.

bean said...

I love that you took me to that neighborhood. So pretty & charming.

Anonymous said...

I always thought it would make great reading or even a documentary, for that matter about Halloween. The orgins, the urban legends, how different cities, towns and villages hand down the traditions of Halloween. I was fascinated to find out how kids in the city celebrate. I know some apartment buildings organize a trick or treat in the lobbys.

Your stories always brings me back.

NecroBones said...

Sounds like a great location. It truly is amazing when the whole street gets involved like that.

The neighborhood I live in wouldn't know a holiday if it came up and bit them. Even Christmas is pathetic here.

Bob said...

Newtown, and Bucks County in general is GORGEOUS for Autumn and Halloween. I grew up in Philadelphia and I can remember ToT'ing until 10 or 11pm, but as I got older the neighborhoods got worse and it seemed the traditions changed. But now that I'm in Chalfont, PA my neighborhood is wonderful for Halloween. It's a scene much like you described in Newtown.

Rot said...

Cool. I've been in Chalfont a few times. And Dublin, PA. I bet it IS pretty nice during Halloween.

The Captain said...

I wish I could find a spot like that down in Florida, but I'm like you, attached to my yard for the night. I want to live in a neighborhood like that.

Ps you should totally write a book, your writing is so easy to follow, and descriptive, it just sucks you in to a mental picture every time.