Halloween is alive and well in Melbourne.
Its popularity is growing fast. Apparently it’s growing so fast that those unable to purchase their own Halloween decorations would go so far as to steal their neighbor’s decorations. Our skeleton went missing late last week and my daughter was devastated. We made “MISSING” signs in hopes of its return (and teach my daughter a plan of action) but I knew too well that it was gone forever.
I purchased large pumpkins, fake cobwebs and pumpkin pails at our local grocery store and other Halloween paraphernalia at costume or Fancy dress shops. However, the holiday is still a novelty. One man pointed at my cart and loudly cried, “What in the world is that???”
Me, “It’s a pumpkin.”
Loud man, “Is it real???”
Loud man, “Did you buy it here???”
Loud man, “Where???”
Me, “With the fruits and vegetables, duh.”
The American Women’s Auxiliary, a charitable organization associated with the Royal Children’s Hospital, has an annual “Trunk or Treat” event. Without definitive trick-or-treat plans, we booked tickets. It was a lot of fun and my kids were more than excited. Instead of going house to house we went trunk to trunk, or boot to boot. Not only did we meet other Americans but lots of Australians joined in on the fun.
I asked mums about Halloween plans. Most had no plans nor any intentions of plans but those that did seemed somewhat secretive, as if Halloween was an unacceptable cult holiday. But I nosed around and found a couple of streets that participated in last year’s Halloween celebration. However, a few days before Halloween a note arrived in our post box asking for participants in a neighborhood trick or treat. Done. My kids would have a proper Australian Halloween.
We bumped into other children and mums from my daughter’s kindergarten, other American expats and plenty of clueless home owners giving out unwrapped candy. In her American accent, Claire would loudly state, “Mom, we can’t eat this one either! It’s unwrapped! Will you wrap it so I can eat it later?”
Home owners stated that they began celebrating Halloween 3 years ago and it keeps getting “bigga’.” Watch out America, Halloween is rising in Australia.