Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Haunting

You know how sometimes you do something cool and you have a lot of fun, but you forget to really tell anyone about it? And then after a week or so it's not even a story worth telling?

This is one of those. I don't know that it's no longer worth telling, but the lustre has worn off. Had I written about it earlier, it would have been a more charming story, no doubt. But I wanted to have it for posterity, so here it is regardless.

This Halloween season (Really? Is there a whole season now?) I was invited to a Halloween party. That's pretty rare. The last time I went to a Halloween party was probably 15 years ago. This party was sort of a team-based mystery/scavenger hunt thing and part of the game was that all the teams were supposed to go around and "haunt" the other team's houses. Each team had a name...like the Devils & Demons or the Spiders & Skeletons and we "haunted" others' houses in theme with our team names. So, there was a week in there where my house was being haunted nightly...sometimes multiple times. It was always fun to peak out the door and see what might be out there next! Our windows were painted in window graffiti, there were bats hung from the porch, a doormat replaced with someone else's, super spicy brownies, streamers, lollipops dressed as ghosts... This kids found this all VERY entertaining.

This was sort of a school-based party, so I knew most of the other guests and the folks haunting my house. But there's a little boy who lives on our street who doesn't go to the same school as my kids. He saw all the new decorations around our house. I think Mam must've explained them to him. And he was jealous! Mam said he really wanted for his house to be haunted too!

I'd been planning to meet some friends for brunch in San Francisco Sunday morning, but the Giants pulled out the miracle of returning from St. Louis with games left to play and Smunch was going to Game 6 with his dad, who suddenly had tickets that were good for something. So, I stayed home with Mam...and we went shopping.

Of course, this wasn't girly shopping. The first thing she insisted upon was a screaming doormat. Ohhhh-kay. Nothing's too good for our neighbors! We went to every drugstore in town...Rite Aid, CVS, Walgreens...and scooped up whatever was on sale or just looked too fun to pass up.

Fortunately, I also happened to know that our neighbors were going to a soccer tournament in Carmel in the afternoon. They wouldn't be back 'til late evening. So Mam and I hauled our bags and a ladder down there and staged the best darned haunting EVER.

And the screaming doormat was just a little part of the whole plan. There was caution tape across their front door, tombstones along their path, a ghost floating in their carport, creepy crawlies scattered about, little lollipop ghosts in all sorts of unexpected places, a larger spider web and spider across their lovely bay window and their trellis, now decked out in orange twinkle lights a big glowing spiders.
Mam and I also baked some cupcakes, which I sadly forgot to photograph, with funny zombie wrappers and instructions to make the light pink frosting look like exposed brains. We left those for a ding-dong-doorbell-ditch the next day, when we knew they were home.

Mam could not wait for them to get home that night. Unfortunately, it was far past her bedtime by then, but as she was going to sleep she said to me, "Mom, this was one of the most fun days, ever!"

A little while later, I received this e-mail entitled "Is everything okay at your house?" It read: "We just got home and our house has been haunted...really, it's really scary...is everything okay at your house? p.s. are you missing some scissors? we have them here."

And if the rumor I heard was true, one little boy came home to a very spooky house and declared it the BEST day of his life!

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