"Which day? Which day are you taking about?", I said.
This went on for awhile.
Then he said, "which day where you get the pumpkin buckets and knock on doors to get chocolate."
"Oh, WITCH Day! Halloween, you mean. It's next Monday."
"Yeah. Witch Halloween Day."
Here's a recap of Halloween 2016, starring R & J.
The boys school had dress-ups for Halloween. We reused their Harry Potter costumes from the previous years trick or treating expedition - little cloaks with "Hogwarts Pre-School" on them, a pointy wizard hat, and a wand made of solid wood that is probably a little too close to resembling a sword for comfort.
When we arrived, I dressed them both in their costumes over the top of their normal clothes. Then J immediately took off everything and shoved it in his locker. It was still in the locker when I came to pick them up.
They had also had some face painting, with a spider and scar on each cheek. J said, "look at my car!".
I said, "you mean your scar".
He yelled at me, "it's a car!".
We got home and I asked them which of the hand-me-down superhero costumes they wanted to wear. They are from their cousin, who has outgrown them. My boys haven't quite grown into them. The Incredible Hulk and Iron Man had their costume legs tucked into their shoes and their sleeves folded back underneath themselves.
|Iron Man J and Incredible Hulk R, ready for Halloween.|
I don't know how three-year olds know so much about all the Marvel superheroes. They're not allowed to watch the films.
I also don't know how, even with costumes tucked into their socks, they both tripped multiple times as we walked around the local streets trick or treating.
In my area, the houses participating in Halloween put up an orange sign dropped in the mailbox by a mysterious stranger. After we've been to about three marked houses, I playfully said, "do you think you've got enough?"
R surprisingly said, "yes". He had a lollipop, a Mars Bar and a jelly lolly shaped like a severed foot. We were still in our small street. You could see our house.
I said, "I was joking, you're bucket is not close to full!".
He now understood his mission. And this would be the phrase repeated back to me after every single visited house. "Come on dad, my bucket isn't full yet!"
I later learned that one reason his bucket was never full was that he kept swinging it and items were falling out behind us.
Meanwhile, J was very selective in how he filled his bucket. Instead of taking from the top of a bowl, he was rummaging with precision. It was no problem to navigate past rubbish like Turkish Delights to find Milky Ways and "Fremmo" Frogs, and he was always after lollipops when available, which is unfortunate as he chews them and then leaves the sticks around the house.
The orange sign system is efficient but it also means that the hoards of costumed kids are relentless. Houses were beginning to run out of stock.
One house that had run out of treats gave the boys Woolworths explorer cards, and for a three-year old cards and stickers are as good as candy. At another house, the lady apologised for running out of chocolates before handing over two Uncle Toby's muesli bars. These were probably the most expensive items received.
With the returns diminishing, spirits were flagging. J started to claim we'd been to houses we hadn't visited yet, then began complaining about his sore feet in a futile attempt to get carried. R was still adamant his bucket was not yet full.
We arrived home after about 90 minutes. My wife had been manning our door and run out of supplies too. She commented that a lot of dads had been dressed up.
I suggested I could get a costume next year.
She said, "oh yeah, some wore costumes but I mean they just dress better. They look cool."