My brother was a few years older than me (and still is) so of course he didn’t want his little 7-or 8-year-old brother tagging along with him and his friends on Halloween, but my mom made him take me.
It gets pretty cold in Michigan in late October and I can remember being all bundled up like little Randy in Christmas Story, to where I could hardly move my arms. But my cold fingers fiercely gripped the big brown grocery bag I hoped to see filled with candy before the night was over.
We set out at twilight, before it was even fully dark yet, working our own neighborhood first. My trick or treat bag was half full before we even got to the more distant neighborhoods.
I was half running to keep up with the older boys, and I soon was sweating profusely. My hot breath condensed against the inside of the cold rubber mask, making it wet against my face, and it soon slipped down so I could only see out of one eye hole and had to tilt my head back until my neck ached just to get the one eye.
Our town was small, so even the distant neighborhoods were less than a mile from our house, but as my bag got heavier and heavier, it began to be an ordeal rather than great fun. I was happy when the porch lights started to go out and we headed back home.
The first thing we used to do was dump our bags of booty out on our beds and separate the candy into piles. Candy bars in one pile, bubble gum in another, suckers in another, and so forth. Why? I don’t know. It all soon got mixed up again anyway.
I don’t know if it was the sweating in the cold night, or simply the ingestion of so much sugar over a period of a few days, but even now I associate Halloween with sickness. Or at least with throwing up.
An odd holiday, Halloween.
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