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Trick or treat

trick or treatLast night we all had an early Halloween fright when we got home well after dark. Liz had been Doughnut-sitting and took the opportunity to trick or treat us. There was a skull waiting for me at eye level on the loo and a realistic, in a corner-of –the-eye way, hairy fake false widow spider on the stairs. In contrast she’d made sure that Doughnut – who never leaves the ground floor – was stuffed with mince like a vine leaf, a warm lavender bag on his dodgy shoulder with the curtains pulled, soft mood lighting and the TV on low for company.

I do love Halloween – and this year I’m prepared – unlike last year when Katy and I had to scrump the last pumpkin in North London from the window of The Owl Bookshop at five to six, just as they were about to close. Talk about the witching hour.

This year, I nipped out to the fancy dress shop in my lunch hour, which was as busy as McDonalds and twice as efficient. Seeing I was in a flap, the security guard pointed me towards the capes and as I queued at the counter to pay for my vampire teeth the assistant enquired, “Would you like blood with that madam?” proffering a handy tube.

Consequently Katy was decked out like a pint-sized Christopher Lee – with an ash white face and jagged teeth dripping blood – as we headed for the school’s Halloween disco last Thursday.

It was daylight but she still put the fear of God into a man of a certain age who stopped us and asked, “It’s not Halloween tonight is it?” apparently worried that he hadn’t stocked up on treats. “No, you’ve got another week yet” I reassured him, kicking myself (several hours) later for not replying, “How Very Dare You – we’ve just come back from the dentist.”

I hope he wasn’t genuinely worried about being trick or treated. Although there are rich pickings for trick or treaters here – most abide by the code of only knocking where they see either a welcoming light or a pumpkin. There are a few eggs thrown every now and then and I do remember the night of the green slime. The greengrocer (it was a few years ago) had left out a crate of slightly past it avocados and some kids could not resist using them as missiles. It was a warm night for October and Liz, enterprising as ever, kept her window open just in case. Well you know what they say – when life throws you avocados, make guacamole.

Posted by Amanda Blinkhorn

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