it seems that, and i truly never thought i would ever say this, i missed new jersey yesterday.

halloween in old city philly, it appears, is not for the cute, eager, excitable young ones looking to stuff their bags with sweet treats. no. it is for the loud, it is for the scandalously dressed, and it is for those who create, distribute, serve, and finally then drink, alcoholic beverages.

essentially, halloween here is for the not-so-cute, incredibly eager and excitable twenty-somethings, looking to stuff their something else with someone else’s something else altogether.


prior to moving to the big city, our halloweens in new jersey were filled with the most adorable little children. every year i would make a huge effort to buy candy well in advance of only the crappy stuff being left in the store, and take off from work early enough so that i wouldn’t miss the earliest (and oftentimes cutest) of arrivals.

then, once the trick-or-treaters began to arrive, for the next four hours or so, mike and i would commune.

we would commune with the children screaming proudly, or shyly whispering, “trick or treat!” at our doorstep.

we would commune with the accompanying parents, who, while we never really knew each other by name, got to know each other by face, year after year.

we would commune with our neighbors, all of us often sitting on our respective front porches, enjoying the crisp night air, or the unusually warm weather, chatting, catching up, exchanging stories, remarking on the most adorable costumes. being the people that american folktales are made of.

although we’ve moved on now (for the better, overall, i might add), and halloween will never be the same as it was in our small neighborhood in new jersey, i’m glad to have those times in my back pocket as a memory. i’m also happy to have them as something to strive for in halloweens  yet to come.