As I’ve mentioned a few times, we live in a neighborhood that is mostly older adults. My mom and stepdad, in their early 50’s, are actually towards the young end.
We did get 2 new preschoolers on the block this year, but other than that, there is only one other house at the other end of the block with kids. Most of the neighbors have grandkids who are almost teenagers or older.
The block is pretty much closed. About 7 houses have their porch lights on… and of those, only 2 were actually answering the door (and 1 of those was my mom!). The rest of those 7, left porch light on, lights obviously on in living rooms, but just didn’t answer. I felt like leaving notes that they would have a lot less knocking if they would turn the porch light off.
So, we drove over to a church trunk or treat at a large church, then to my aunts, then to my grandma’s house. Which was more than a bit awkward, having not seen her since the whole “have a nice life” christmas card, but civil enough.
And, as we have the past 3 years, we trick or treated there.
About half of the houses had either porch lights or decorations up. The ones that had lights of those, answered. (We didn’t bother the ones that didn’t have either porch lights or decorations, unless they had the front doors open.)
But oh the decorations!
These people put on a show. Lots of flying bats. Lots of spooky music. Tons of people answering the door in costume.
Quite a few houses the people would set up in chairs outside… with or without fire pits.. or hide and scare kids.
Now… the irony…. is that this neighborhood is filled with even older people than ours! It’s seriously mostly retired people, many around my grandma’s age.
And yet, they have fun!
They enjoy the kids, many of whom are probably grandkids and great-grandkids of the other residents.
The difference never ceases to make me think.
Sure, the people over here had less effort. But at the end of the night, I bet they were still just annoyed at the doorbell and glad it was over.
But I always wonder what it is… that makes the difference. Is it just that the neighbors in the other neighborhood were having fun, and it spread by community? Is it a difference in relating to kids? Is it just an individual decision not to be grumpy and withdrawn?
I dunno. But whatever it is…. it makes a ton of difference. To everyone involved I’m sure!