Growing up, I (Julie) loved Halloween. It was fun to dress up as something fun. My favorite costume was definitely the pink southern bell dress that had a hoop skirt. It certainly was a dream come true to have puffy sleeves, white gloves and a pretty bonnet. Then, there was the candy. Yum! It was pure, innocent fun for me, and I always enjoyed it.
According to our friends, Halloween has only arrived in Spain within the last 15 years or so. It is a holiday from outside the country (i.e. USA), and it is viewed by our friends as a sad and ugly holiday. Unfortunately, what has transferred is simply a holiday to celebrate fear and death. The costumes are only related to fear, such as ghosts, witches, vampires…etc. It does catch your eye when a four year old walking down the street has fake blood dripping from her mouth. Two of my friends chose to keep their kids home from school on Halloween because the celebration, even for the youngest kids, is all about scary things.
I share with my Spanish friends how this isn’t what Halloween is about in the States. Certainly there are the people that dress up as scary characters and focus on fear, but more than anything, I think it simply a fun day for people to wear fun costumes and enjoy some candy. At least, that is the clear impression that I received from reviewing my Facebook newsfeed the day after. Let’s see…there was the little pig, Super Mario brothers, twin babies dressed as two peas in a pod, a penguin, a fireman, the zebra, and countless super heroes and princesses. I really wanted to show my friends all of these sweet pictures.
It’s sad to me that something so ugly here is believed to be from the US. I want to correct everyone’s thinking and tell them that Halloween is much different in the States. It is sad to see a holiday catching on here that celebrates fear and horror to such an extent.