How many days until … Halloween?

Look who it is! My friend's teenage daughter carved Elsa from Frozen into her pumpkin. Amazing!
Look who it is! My friend’s teenage daughter carved Elsa from Frozen into her pumpkin. Amazing!

It started on 1st October. “Mum, how many days until Halloween?” Son2 was pointing at the small, orange, smiley pumpkin that marks 31st October on our calendar on the fridge.

I warned him that it was still some way off. After all, when you’re 6 and waiting for a candy windfall, a month must feel like an eternity, and I really wasn’t ready to put Halloween decorations up yet.

By the second week of October, his impatience was growing. “Is it Halloween tomorrow? If it’s not tomorrow, is it the next day? Or the day after that?” In the middle of chatting about something completely different, he’d suddenly take me down a conversational dogleg:

“Can we put Halloween decorations up, pleeeeeaaasseeeee. Mum, MUM, MUM!

‘You promised!” [said plaintively, looking me squarely in the eye]

So we buckled a few days ago, and in our front garden, where pink bougainvillea climbs frothily up the wall, there’s now a few creepy additions. We planted a skull in the flowerbed, dangled a one-armed skeleton in the porch, propped a gravestone up and draped cobwebs over the bushes – ready for our community’s collective descent into trick-or-treatery at the end of the month. (DH, while on a trip to New York, even sorted the ‘big reveal’ by buying Son2 a new alien costume at a Halloween store.)

But then, I was caught off-guard again today. On a different topic. It wasn’t so much the question: What are you doing for Christmas? Rather, the snippet of information my hair stylist passed on next: “Some of the big brunches are sold out already!”

A fact I can well believe, having also just discovered that the take-away roast turkeys from my local golf club are all booked up – and they’re taking names for 2015!

I’m surely not the only person who hasn’t thought this far ahead? Oh well, at least we’ve nearly nailed Halloween.

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