Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween 2010

Another Halloween has come and gone. The kids had a good time trick-or-treating, even little grumpy Baby H. How could they not have had a good time? Each came home lugging a bag full of candies.We made it to 20 homes and by the end of the 2 hours, I was ready to puke at the sight of candies. Judging by the amount of candies they had gotten, I could expect them to be on a sugar high for the next month of so. Uh oh!

This is our third Halloween since arriving in Abu Dhabi. Back in Malaysia, Halloween is largely ignored even by non-muslims as it isn't an asian practice or tradition. The only places that we could enjoy dressing up for Halloween would be in American restaurants and various discotheques. Those days were a lot of fun but it still wasn't the real Halloween experience.

I remember experiencing Halloween when I was little. At that time we were living in the States. I had really wanted to become Wonder Woman. Every little girl back then wanted to become Wonder Woman. I had begged my mom for weeks for the costume but on the day, much to my disappointment, she had handed me a wicked witch costumer instead. My mom reasoned that the Wonder Woman outfit was just too expensive and if I didn't want to wear the wicked witch outfit, I could just stay at home with her.

What child wants to miss trick-or-treating? With heavy heart, I put on the outfit. My best friend and neighbour at that time arrived with her dad to pick my brother and me up to take us out for trick-or-treat. Imagine my dismay when I saw her in a Wonder Woman costume. When I stepped out of the house, almost all the girls were Wonder Woman! I had really wanted to throw a tantrum but knowing that my mom would keep me at home if I did so, I swallowed it all in.

But everything was soon forgotten when we did our rounds. Each house had something special awaiting us. Hairy gorillas jumping out of the door, evil witches passing out candied apple and an old woman holding a broom who insisted we bobbed for apples. It was good fun. At the end, it didn't matter that I wasn't Wonder Woman. All that mattered was that I ended having a 'Wonder'ful time. :))

As a Muslim, I don't celebrate Halloween. But I don't see it as wrong for letting my children enjoy cross cultural experiences. Living in the States when I was little, my parents had provided me the opportunity to experience the diverse culture and traditions there all the while guiding and monitoring me so I do not forget my roots, religion, traditions and beliefs. 30 years later, I think I turned out okay. I believe the best decisions are usually made with experience and hope that I could do the same for my kids as how my parents had done for me.

Dearest S didn't get to cover the 4 last houses when I told her that she was done and had to get ready for her Quran class. She didn't complain and without fuss, quickly changed into her arbaya, don her hijab and ran so fast as she did not want to be late for her lesson. Her only regret about quitting Halloween earlier than the rest was that she'll have less candies than her siblings. I think she'll turn out alright, especially since I compensated by filling up her goody bag with even more candy of my own. :)

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