Yep…That’s Me: A Halloween Late Bloomer!

This morning began later than usual, by at least an hour.  So in fact, those proverbial chickens were already up and well-past crowing to a new day.  As I put feet to the floor I was already aware that something wasn’t quite right. Every bone in my body ached and my head was pounding.  I made my way to the bathroom and stood before the mirror. Oh my.  What a fright, to be sure. My hair, crazy wild, looked like I had stuck my finger in an electrical socket. Then, on closer inspection, I note a bruise on the corner of my mouth.

Hmm? That’s strange. How on earth….?

Ah, yes!  The light bulb in my head is instantly on as I recall the events of last night.

AHEM….now folks, this is a G-rated site….just saying.

I’m talking about trick-o-treating with my nephew here.

My body is responding to a night in a neighborhood that really knows how to do Halloween.  Who knew that I had to make it to sixty before experiencing real Halloween fun?  Better late than never, eh?

So there I was meeting up with my sis and family well before the fun was set to begin.  Sis was busy putting the final touches on her nine-year-old’s costume.  This year he chose to be a mummy.  Sis had wrapped him from top to bottom in white gauze.  Ever the artist, she had also made up his face and spray-colored his hair jet black.  He looked fabulous.

“Where did you get all that gauze?” I asked pointing to a large bag with a few more rolls of gauze left in it.

“On Amazon,” she replied.  “In fact, this whole get-up cost me less than $15.”

Just about that time my nephew’s friend arrives with his mom in tow.  Patrick is dressed as the Halloween Scream character, complete with a mask that fills with an impressive amount of fake blood with the squeeze of a trigger.  We all exchange gushes over costumes and us moms catch up for a few minutes.

Halloween Scream

We are just about ready to step out with the boys for their trick-o-treating fun when my brother-in-law stops us.

“Wait.  You lovely ladies need a refill before heading out,” he says with a big smile.  We had been enjoying a glass of red wine with chips and salsa while the boys had hot-dogs (after all, trick-o-treating requires sustenance.)    It only takes him a moment to hand us each a paper cup filled with a generous pour of red wine.  “You are the greatest bro-in-law!” I all but sing.

The cold night air took us all by surprise.  Just an hour before I had been raking leaves in short sleeves!

We crisscrossed our way up and down neighborhood streets, scurrying to keep up with an excited mummy and his Scream sidekick as best we could without spilling our wine.  The normally quiet streets were alive and bustling with throngs of costumed kids and parents everywhere.  I was surprised that so many parents dressed up.  I was equally impressed by the spooky Halloween decorations; so many houses were seriously decorated to the hilt with ghostly eerie music to add to the theme of the night.

Incredulous, I wasBoy have I been under a rock for too long or what.  I hadn’t seen this much enthusiasm about Halloween in many years.

Following the boys, we made our way up the sidewalk of one particularly interesting house.  Among other spooky things planted in the yard, there was a gigantic inflatable character, Jack, from The Nightmare Before Christmas swaying to and fro on the second floor balcony just above the front door.

Nightmare “Jack”

Naturally we were mightily impressed.  The presumed owner of the house was dressed entirely in black sporting a well-made up, thoroughly frightening face. I’ll forever think of him as Mr. Scary-face.  He beckoned the trick-or-treaters (including us moms) to step forward closer to the door.  Literally six seconds later Jack swooped down from the balcony above us–coming up from behind–to give us all a fright, laugh.  Mr. Scary-face however had a partner-in-crime.  A positively ghoulish character jumped up from behind me, startling me so that I my left hand flew up–that would be the one carrying my cup of wine. In fact, the edge of the cup hit the side of my mouth just as I was attempting to take a sip.  In a flash I was covered in wine.

Side Note:  So, THAT folks is how I got this bruised lip!

“Hey, that was a good cup of wine that I just lost,” I cried.  Really, I was laughing hysterically, as was my sis.  I was drenched. But worse, my cup was um….empty!

Mr. Scary-face was genuinely concerned.  “Well, just wait a minute.  I have a good Malbec for a refill.”

“No, no.  I’m good,” I replied still laughing.  “Really. No worries.”

Mr. Scary-face insisted.

Before I knew it, my cup was full again.  What a terrific neighbor, don’t you think?!

As we made our way to the next destination–The Haunted trail–another neighbor commented on our cups in hand.

“Good for you gals. That’s the way to do this thing…trick-or-drink!” she said.

“I’m just learning about this at sixty,” came my bubbly reply. I raised my cup in a toasting gesture. “What can I say…I’m a late bloomer!”

A few hours later I made my way home.  Rocket-man had been holding down the fort.  He sees that I’m shivering from head to toe from running around the neighborhood in thin tights and a wine-stained top.

With a raised eye-brow and a twinkle in his eye, he asked: “Well. Well. Well did we have fun?”

“Oh, I had a blast,” I gushed and giggled as I recounted the night.  “The Haunted Trail was A.M.A.Z.I.N.G!  I’ve never had this kind of Halloween fun, even when I had young kids.”  I couldn’t stop laughing as we went through the neighborhood haunted trail.  I got my feet seriously stomped on, I lost my wine….twice… I’m dog-tired, wet, and chilled to the bone…but OH what fun!”

Rocket-man is happy to see my school-girl happiness.  It’s a much-needed respite in a sea of otherwise.

So…It’s not surprising that I’ve got bruises from top to bottom today.  Ridiculously, I’m thinking about next Halloween.  Sis is concocting plans for our own Haunted Trail.

BLISS, at least a hundred-fold.

Plus…there is a ton of candy left.  Life is good.

Whine Time

Greetings from limbo-land.  We’re officially at the 20-month mark and there doesn’t seem to be a light at the end of this tunnel.  While we are immensely grateful for these temporary digs my frustration (read: that’s an understatement) is reaching an all time high.  I’d say a short calming mantra to ease this frustration while fingering my simple fossil coral Mala-bead bracelet–the one I chose before our temporary sojourn began.  It’s “Air element” properties symbolized movement and change (if you believe that sort of thing).  The concept was appealing in the moment when I saw it.  So, with the click of the mouse, it was mine and it made me smile.  

Alas my bracelet was inadvertently ripped to smithereens by one very grumpy old cat this morning.

Is the universe trying to tell me I didn’t need one more bracelet?

So, while signing for a package, trying to keep two very enthusiastic dogs from knocking over the UPS dude, said cat scooted with amazing speed past the feverishly excited dancing dogs, right between my legs, darting out into the yard, into the bright sunlight.  He’s old, in poor health and not an outdoor cat.   My heart rate shot off the charts as I flew over a brick landscape wall to catch the cat before he was able to make a complete get-away.  I  managed to come up behind him as he had stopped for a moment to chew on a blade of grass.

Whew, gotcha!  I scooped his thin frame up into my arms and, well… let’s just say he was not going down without a fight.

“I completely get it,” I say to the cat as I make a dash back into the house.  “I’d want to enjoy what time I have left too…out in this beautifully lush yard with this lovely summer breeze tickling all of my senses. But you are not going to get lost-in-the-wild on my watch you silly cat.  Besides, more importantly, you are NOT an outdoor cat!

I was nearly on the front porch when the cat made one last valiant squirming effort at escaping from my arms.  Ouch!  I felt the scratch to my left wrist and heard the clink of metal to the ground.  I didn’t stop to investigate as my only focus was to get the cat back into the house before he could extricate himself from my grip.

Once inside, after a moment or two to catch my breath, I gave the cat a piece of my mind.  The dogs were sitting, still as statues, seemingly enjoying the moment.

HA, HA, HA….you’re the one in trouble now.  She’s not lecturing us!

I went into the powder room to wash the cat scratch area and that was when I noticed my bracelet was gone.  Son of a biscuitThat was the metal sound.

Sure enough, I found the small air element charm, alone on the pavement but all the beads had scattered helplessly, disappearing into the lush abyss of grass and chip beds.

The package I signed for was a wine shipment.  I think I’ll open it.  It’s five-O’clock somewhere….right?