Tuesday, October 26, 2004


We meant to decorate the carport on the weekend, but it was raining too hard, then we went out to the movie. I got the boxes out of the attic, but that's as far as we got.

Monday afternoon it was raining, but still light outside. With the prospect of a very busy week ahead and a free hour right now, I said "Let's do it." Son got lower braces added in the morning so he was moaning and taking ibuprofen and feeling pretty lousy. Daughter was studying for a science test before her rehearsal, so husband and I did the job.

In our neighbourhood the houses are close together. Carports adjoing and front yards are non-existent. We live on the street a lot, though. Everyone has deck chairs and bicycles in their carport. The kids play while the adults chat. Cats stroll, dogs are promenaded. Cars do the obligatory crawl or risk having a dozen voices call sternly "Slow down! There's kids out here!" It's a pretty people friendly street.

For all special days we decorate. Canada Day is a riot of real flags poking precariously off balconies and out of eavestroughs. Christmas is over-the-top. Good thing the tour buses haven't heard about us! Halloween is just goofy. There are more pumpkins assembled in our complex already than in the rest of the lower mainland. By Halloween night, more houses than not will have lights and lanterns and witches, bats and ghosts.

We own about 4 boxes of stuff we've accumulated over the years - mostly home-made by the kids, but also dollar-store novelty bits that husband-shopper has brought home. He hung up all of the electrical stuff while I did the lower-tech. It took us about 35 minutes, and the place looks like it. There's a scarecrow staple-gunned to a post and those goofy plastic bags stuffed with straw that look like ghosts and pumpkins (well, not really, but you get the idea) staple-gunned along the eaves. A row of "creepy masks" from Dover books finishes the non-electrical picture - oh yeah, there's caution tape too - Stay Back! Danger! Halloween House! For lights there are pumpkins, skulls, purple spiders, flashing pumpkins and black spiders. The actual pumpkin vegetables are still in hiding to avoid smashage. Our friends brought us another behemoth this year - must be 80 pounds. We'll carve the beast on Saturday (with a chain saw?) It's big enough to imprison a wolverine inside, but husband plans to put a strobe light in it. Cooooolllll.

What were two grownups doing outside on a drippy, cold Monday afternoon with a staple gun and boxes of tacky decorations? our neighbourhly duty? reliving childhood? unleashing stifled creativity? meaningless obligation? moon-crazy obsession? Whatever, it looks good when it's dark out.

Question: Did you?

mompoet - not likely to get hired for any display windows anytime soon

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