Sixteen years ago, I set out Trick or Treatin' with my nephew Christian and his mother, Chesne, for Christian's first Halloween. We dressed him as a little pumpkin, all in orange, and he toted a garbage bag, which we managed to fill to the brim with candy.
As a child Halloween was a scary time for me. I'm not sure if the world got nicer, but when I was little you heard stories of razor blades with apples every year, it never felt safe to be out and about, and one year some older kids tried to drown, my sweet, black kitty until one of the girls in their group stopped them. After that most of my Halloweens were spent in the cocoon of my home.
Everything changed when Christian was born. I was an adult now, but I got to enjoy Halloween through a child's eyes and it was magical. At that time, Buffy was our sole pug, but soon Vader followed and as the years passed they joined us Trick or Treatin'. Other nieces and nephews arrived on the scene and so did other pugs, but most years I find myself at Chesne's house for pictures and to see her kids don their costumes and hit the road. I usually meet up with the other nieces and nephews and we have a blast.
This year, unfortunately, I had to take my father to the airport, so I had to miss out on the traditional Halloween fun, but not on Halloween itself. After the airport, the pugs and I (all three of us dressed in matching Rolling Stone tees) managed to catch another Halloween first -- my niece Ellie's first Halloween. She dressed as a cupcake and was decidedly sweet enough to eat.
We all piled into the car to go Trick or Treatin' in Waterbury and even managed to get egged by a passing youngster. We decided to forgo the crowds and take a ride to the famous Ellie's Pumpkin display in Northfield, Vt. only to discover that it was not on this year. Part of us was disappointed -- we wanted to take pictures of Ellie in front of Ellie's Pumpkin Patch display -- but the other part was happy that we were all together. The magic, it turns out comes from that.