Celebrating Halloween in a Different Country
“Do they even celebrate Halloween in Australia?”
I’ve asked it. My friends have asked it. And now I’m telling you:
They do celebrate Halloween in other countries!
This came as a great surprise for me because Halloween is one of my favorite holidays (I had a cat named Halloween, RIP).
My best Halloween was NYC circa 2016 when I was Lit. Legit, lit.
But as Halloween 2017 rolls around, I’m not as excited. I’m living in Australia and it doesn’t seem to be that big of a deal here. There aren’t any advertisements for haunted houses and I haven’t seen any pumpkins at the grocery store. It was even hard to find a jumbo bag of candy to leave out for trick or treaters – but then again – only America does jumbo size anything.
Even more daunting: I haven’t seen or had a pumpkin spice latte yet. The basic white girl in me is crushed.
Halloweekend wasn’t happening for me either. People didn’t dress up to go to Halloween parties, so it just seemed like any other weekend in Melbs. I stayed on the couch, ate candy and watched Stranger Things. It sucks getting old.
After emerging from my sugar hangover after the weekend, I realized that I might actually get a proper American Halloween because I get to take Flynn trick or treating!
So I decided to go all out.
“Flynn, what are you being for Halloween?” (I probably asked him this a hundred times.)
Then I’m being a zombie too.
You would think it’s any other Tuesday in Australia on October 31st. None of the houses have decorations and I have yet to see one Jack-O-Lantern.
As I picked up Flynn from school, I listened to the radio hosts’ take on Halloween:
“So what do you think of Halloween, Jim?”
“I think, America and commercialization.”
Well, there you have it.
Flynn and I got our zombie costumes ready and we looked scary as (Aussies say “as” at the end of things without completing the phrase. Don’t ask why.)
“Halloween is just starting to get big here,” Flynn explained. “But I know where all the good houses are.”
Just like any other kid who’s mapped out which houses give out the best candy on Halloween.
So our adventure began. And yes, I did dress up as a zombie and go trick or treating at the ripe old age of 24. And no, I did not feel awkward taking candy from the teenagers who answered the doors. Or when the old people would say, “Does mom want some candy, too?” LOL BYE.
Flynn and I had fun though. It was more of a game of which house can get the most creative when we knocked on the door and they forgot it was Halloween. Hands down, it goes to the dude who gave Flynn a Fanta soda. The old dude who ran after us with Ferrero Rocher chocolates comes in a close second.
Whenever we saw a group of kids running from a house we got so excited because that meant jackpot.
“They wouldn’t be happily running out of that house if they just got tampons,” Flynn said matter of factly.
We spent two hours wandering around the decoration-less neighborhood looking for candy. And we ended with a total of 163 pieces! Not bad—although his younger sister racked in a total of 246 pieces of candy.
They laid all their candy on the floor and compared and traded chocolates and gummies—just like I did at their age. Halloween may not be as big in Australia, but this year was definitely one for the books.