My first Halloween
| "Can we go, mom? Please?" my sister and I begged, with my 12 year old cousin, Phyllis, egging us on.|
I could tell mom was thinking it over but wouldn't be easily persuaded. To me, it didn't sound like anything much to think about but that's adults for you. They gotta think everything over carefully as if it were important.
"I did this last year by myself and it was fine." My cousin was up to bat for us. "We'll be careful and only go to houses of people we know."
That wouldn't be very many, I thought. I mean, how many people live in a lumber camp? Just a few families, a bunch of single men in bunkhouses, the cook and a school teacher.
Still it sounded like fun, going around getting candy from people.
Finally, Mom said okay and bundled us up for the frosty Canadian weather in parkas covered with funny ghost costumes thrown together out of old sheets. We set out with Phyllis through the dark to 'trick or treat'.
I admired my cousin. She was twice my age and knew so much more than I did.
"When we get to the door, say 'trick or treat'," she explained carefully as we trudged through the snow toward our first house.
"Trick or Treat!" we yelled at the still and darkened house standing cold against the ominous spruce trees behind it.
"Nobody's here so we have to trick them," Phyllis whispered.
I looked at her in horror. "Do we really have to?" It seemed so mean. What would Mom say if we did something nasty to someone?
"Oh, We'll just move these boxes against the door so when they come home they'll have to move them back to get in."
We did the deed and slogged on to the next house. This was not getting to be the fun I had expected.
"Come on in." The people in the next home were friendly and laughing at our costumes. "We'll just get you some treats. Be right back."
In a few minutes, we accepted the foil wrapped treat and excitedly left the house amid the "byes" and laughter.
This was more like it. I could barely wait until we got home to unwrap the goodie to see what we had received. The folks at that house sure must have liked us because the treat we got was almost as big as an apple. I envisioned a chocolate ball or a popcorn ball
or even a candied apple.
I wanted to go on but my 4 year old sister began to complain of the cold so Phyllis decided we had enough and we returned home.
"Look, mom," I shouted. "I got a treat!"
We quickly opened up the foil wrapper and I stared at the wrinkly brown thing that lay in the middle. What was it?
I looked closer.
It was then I understood what trick or treat really meant.
"Oh no," I lamented. "It's only a rotten potato!"