"Would you entertain me or make me play a prank"

   In the 8th century AD, the Christians designated November 1 each year as "Halloween" to commemorate those saints. The eve of Halloween, October 31, was originally called "All Hallows Eve" in English, and then evolved into "Halloween", which is also known as the "Ghost Festival". When Christianity spread to the Middle Ages, it is said that the gate of Yin and Yang was the most easily broken through on the night of October 31st. The spirits of the dead visit the homes of the living. The living people prepare food to entertain their ancestors and deceased people at that time, otherwise they will be disrespectful and unpredictable. Another view holds that October 31 is a pagan holiday. The followers of Satan the Devil will slaughter life on this night and worship Satan with blood. Not only that, they will try their best to release their evil instincts and do all kinds of terrifying and bloody acts to show that they are followers of Satan. Whichever is more credible, over time this religious practice has evolved into a children's holiday. The children went door to door in the street begging for sweets, asking the host if he wanted me to be a treat or a trick or treat. Even before that day, homeowners had prepared candy to give to the children at that time, lest they lead to mischief by the children.

  As visiting scholars, we have been in Lexington, USA for two months. Although the time is not long, we have already experienced the strong religious atmosphere here. As one of the main festivals of Christianity, Halloween is naturally a day that people are keen to celebrate. Especially parents with children purchase various decorations early and carefully arrange the indoor and outdoor, front and back of the house. One of the most essential decorations is the jack-o-lantern. People hollowed out pumpkins, carved smiling eyes and big mouths on the outside, and then put a candle in the melon and lit it. Due to the dim light of the candle, the color of the pumpkin itself is yellow, and from a distance, you would mistake it for a fire from the underworld. In addition, many people's lawns and trees are covered with white spider webs. In front of the door, on the corridor and in the interior, there are figures of different sizes and colors, including angels, farmers, various animals, and of course, monsters and monsters. There is a ghost in a white robe with only eyes showing, and a skeleton in a black hood. Walking nearby makes people feel like they are in the spirit world. It seems that it takes some courage and guts for the children to go up and ask for candy.

  According to local customs, between 6:00 and 8:00 pm on October 31, the children put on all kinds of fancy clothes that their parents bought for them, carried bags in their hands, and went out of the house to ask for candy from their neighbors. Under the guidance of American friends, we started from 6:00 to the neighborhood where the local population is relatively concentrated and there are many children. It was getting dark, and most people's interiors were already brightly lit. If the lights in any house are not lit, it means that the host does not welcome the children. Soon we saw quite a few kids knocking on doors, saying "Trick or Treat!". After the homeowner opened the door, he handed a candy box or a candy basket with great interest to hand the children candy, and greeted the children "Happy Halloween". Many homeowners simply opened the door wide and sat happily in front of their own door to wait for their children, saving the trouble of going back and forth to open the door.

  The most exciting part of the night was of course the children. In addition to getting bags full of candy, they were also able to dress up in their favorite personalized outfits and dress up as the long-awaited image. There are princesses, mermaids, Zorro, pirates, spiderman, tigers, lion king, giraffes, and various sci-fi characters. The older teens came in groups, calling and begging on their own. Younger years are accompanied by their parents. The adults stood in the street from a distance and watched the children walk through the corridor by the lawn in front of the house to the door. Some young parents also dressed themselves up to enjoy this annual happy time like children.

  One homeowner is a young couple. The male host raised his nose which was not low, put on a pair of wide black-rimmed glasses, and put on a white suit with exaggerated design, just like a scientist in the 1950s. The hostess was wearing a dark purple evening dress and a flower hat, completely dressed in medieval lady fashion. The two stood at the door, holding candy boxes and talking to the children who kept coming. Greetings, chatter and laughter on the street one after another. Just as we were sharing the joy of getting candy with our children, we heard alarming screams. Looking at the sound, I saw that there were children and adults standing in front of a house not far away. When we approached, we found that the decoration in front of this house is not inferior to the underworld in any horror movie. The homeowners made full use of modern high-tech to make the whole building shrouded in dim light from different angles. On the lawn in front of the door, there are ghost characters with different shapes and can make various movements and make various sounds from time to time. From time to time a pale mist came out of the doors and windows. Walking to the lawn, we were really taken aback by the terrifying shape of the tree hanging upside down. The timid children did not dare to go forward, but the daring children gathered up the courage and walked cautiously towards the strangely dressed master who was sitting in front of the door. Unexpectedly, the two ghosts sitting and lying in front of the door turned out to be real people. When the children passed by, they suddenly became active and made a terrifying roar, which made the children begging for candy screaming one by one. After calming down, they all laughed.

  Along the way, we unknowingly came to the home of Dr. David Huang, the American director of the exchange program. Dr. and Mrs. Huang had already prepared candy and stood in front of the door to welcome the children. Since we were already familiar with each other, we unceremoniously followed the local customs and asked them "trick or treat". Naturally, in order to avoid what kind of mischief we might make, Dr. Huang smiled and offered us his candy. Although we are no longer children, we each walked down the street with a lollipop in hand. The visit of more than two hours allowed us to experience the Halloween Eve in the United States, and had an addiction.



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