If you were to ask me to name my favorite season I’d hesitate for a moment, then pipe up with an emphatic, “Autumn!” when Halloween rolls in on a pumpkin tide (thank you, Richard Brautigan for the first poem I remember reading) and the weather turns cool in Sleepy Hollow, where legends swirl of the Headless Horseman (wonderful Washington Irving) and when I, as an adult, remember the heightened sense of anticipation, walking in bands of costumed friends — cackling and jostling and chorusing through the night — in pursuit of candy.
When I moved to the suburbs from under the Hollywood sign, one of the motivating factors may have been that in the 10 years I lived in a marvelous Mid-Century house, the neighborhood (windy, hilly, no sidewalks) wasn’t conducive for trick or treating. Every year I’d carve a pumpkin (sometimes three) and no one would appear. Now it’s a cavalcade of kids until I turn off the porch light.
I saw this fine specimen, possibly more suitable for a magic coach than a jack-o’-lantern, in Bucks County, Pennsylvania…
And lacking a winch, five hundred dollars pocket money, and a team of horses I let the Great White Pumpkin be. Now I’m selecting a suitable gourd and stocking up on sweets. Come Saturday, let the festivities commence, Happy Halloween!