I know it’s a bit early but I adore Hallowe’en. I used to love cutting witch shapes out of black card and making ghosts from scrunched-up toilet roll with The Teenager when he was younger. But I especially loved carving a pumpkin, cutting out a lopsided evil grin and having it lit all evening until it started to smoulder.
We didn’t really ‘do’ Hallowe’en as kids. I used to have a Canadian penfriend and I was puzzled when she sent me a Hallowe’en card, so much so that I took it into school the next day where it was handed round with reverence and wonder.
Now The Teenager is way beyond Hallowe’en crafts, laughs at my Happy Hallowe’en wreath and would be seriously worried if he caught me making those ghosts and witches, just for old times sake.
I am determined to keep up my pumpkin tradition no matter what The Teenager says, so yesterday I bought one, lugged it home and looked up pumpkin pie recipes. I do this every year and every year I look at the pile of gunk I’ve just scooped from the pumpkin then sweep it all into the food recycling bin, vowing to do it next year. Promise. A few years ago a yummy-mummy friend of mine separated and dried out all the pumpkin seeds in the oven, then sat down and made a necklace out of them with her daughter during their ‘mummy and me’ time. We are no longer friends, the pressure was too much.
Anyway, the pumpkin is finished. It’s not artistic, more deliberately naiive for that authentic, child-in-the-house look. Can’t be seen to be taking it too seriously. And The Teenager has just told me he is going out trick or treating. I tried to tell him he might come across as quite threatening, being six feet tall, but I was just talking to the hand…