Zombies awaken from their dusty slumber and muster out for roll call as Autumn arrives and Snug Harbor morphs into Spooky Hollow.
Everything outside has been baking since May and is a nice golden brown. The grass is so dry and dusty that every time a grasshopper jumps another one sneezes. And there, down the road in the neighbor’s front yard is a pumpkin. Two houses in the other direction is a light-up skeleton and some plastic ghosts fluttering around in the tree.
And then there’s our house.
You know how every neighborhood has that one house that everyone talks about at Christmas or Halloween. I’m pretty sure that’s us. We build character for the rest of the neighborhood, or bring down property values depending on who you talk to.
New additions to our happy haunt include a pair of ghastly gourds named the Moth Brothers. They’re a terrible team, a dreadful duo, twin traumas with orange eyes and saw blade teeth. And the flamingos are attracted to them for some bizarre reason. Unbelievably, none of the pink birds have gone missing.
It has been a hot summer, and I mean hot!
But it was worth it. The time and sweat that is invested into these stupid lumps of paper and glue every summer is paid back in full when a kid, riding by on his bike, turns around and comes back to stand at the end of the driveway and stare.
Maybe that will be the magical moment when he realizes that even though he’s going to be too old to trick-or-treat someday, he doesn’t have to leave Halloween behind with his Legos and Star Wars action figures. Halloween doesn’t have to end.
Or he’s gauging how far he can chuck the egg in his pocket and whether he’ll have time to get away before the crazy people come running after him.