Halloween has become big business in the USA — I’m used to that, and have always liked both the popular festivities and the spiritual traditions in which they are rooted. But it seems strange to see Halloween props and treats suddenly appear in mainstream English culture, especially when there are already so many seasonal celebrations at this time of year. Our local Sainsbury’s looked a whole lot like an American grocery store this afternoon…. and I’m not quite sure how I feel about that.
I will carve pumpkins like I always do, and welcome little trick-or-treaters just like I would be doing in America, and my fabulous witches are already on display. But it all feels slightly surreal. I’m going to embrace it! In this day and age, when immigration is such a hot news topic, I’m going to welcome every opportunity for happy celebrations and cross-cultural festivities.
And when the chocolate is gone and the streets are quiet, I’m going to honour my ancestors and celebrate their role in my life, just like I do every year. With just over two weeks to go before the big night, the veil is beginning to thin, but I still have plenty of time to prepare on all levels.