Tuesday, October 31, 2017

I'm Too Old For Halloween

Written by  Fr. David Tumback

I so fondly remember Halloween from my youth. As a young child, we would travel to the neighbours and show off our costumes and receive the customary treat. You see, I loved candy. I loved chocolate. I loved bags of chips and creamy toffee. I loved Rockets and Sweethearts and pretty much anything else that we generally would not have had on a regular basis. I dreamed of the days that I would be a "big boy" and allowed to go to the nearby town and get even more treats. How special it was when, on that Halloween night in grade 5, I got permission to stay at my good friend Kent's house and at exactly 4:45 pm we hit the road, pillow case in hand, and made our journey around the town. We traveled every street in town. We relished the thought of all our goodies. Even as our arms began to grow weary of the weight we still did our best to carry on.

There were the houses that we really liked, usually the ones that gave you a real, adult size chocolate bar. We were content with the Junior size (now I call them mini-size) but it was a tremendous score to grab a big size candy bar. We even figured out which of the generous people were forgetful - they got visited twice. One year, I even fancied a third visit and ended up with three big size Coffee Crisp. Seriously, could life get any better?

Then, of course, was our grade 7 year when we really put our minds to the task. Instead of one costume, we had two. Instead of one pillow case, we had two. After a couple of hours on the town, we headed to the house, changed our costumes and headed out again having kept track of the houses that the treats were really, really good. Funny thing that they never figured us out. Our pillow case was empty but our Unicef box was full. Chances are they totally knew our game. They were just being nice. And that year was a great year. Candy galore and all followed up by a couple of dental fillings - a price well paid for the gluttony. Those were fun days.

Choosing a costume was an important event. On the farm it was one time of the year that we had permission to go up into the attic and search around for old clothes. I truly did have some exceptional quality costumes. And today, it is good to see the children put as much thought into their own costumes.

I chanced to drop by our newest elementary school, St. Nicholas, on the afternoon of Halloween. I marveled at some of the unique costumes and must make mention of the gumball machine - it was fantastic. The kids were excited and I loved asking them about their costumes. But then came the biggest challenge of my life: entering the Grade 1 classroom.

I have always prided myself on being "in the know" or at least being somewhat "with it." But it's funny how a six year old can totally burst my ego balloon. As I stood in front of the kids they began to ask, one after another, "Fr. Dave what am I?" It was at that moment that I experienced an inner terror like never before. I realized that I did not know today's cartoon characters and felt completely out of tune with my surroundings. Defeated and deflated I hightailed it into another room just hoping all of the children would be dressed as Disney characters because I know Disney. But as I glanced into the Grade 1/2 split classroom I recognized it was the same as the other classroom. There I was dumfounded by a bunch of costumes that as cute as they were, I had no idea what they were.

And then it occurred to me: maybe I'm too old for Halloween? So off to the rectory I took myself, found some mini Coffee Crisp chocolate bars and reassured myself that I am never too old for Halloween and I will NEVER be too old for a chocolate bar.  



Read 1333 times Last modified on Tuesday, October 31, 2017