Quite a subtle disguise, don't you think? I didn't want to go over the top, but nor did I want to go totally unnoticed. This photo of me was taken in New York last year, the first time in my life that I celebrated or marked Halloween. I was there for my birthday, which of course always falls just a few days before Halloween. This year, here in Lyon, the event went by unnoticed again; the French don't seem to be all that keen on it. But I did see one or two people out in the streets in costumes tonight and it reminded me of New York a year ago. Boy, do New Yorkers know how to celebrate this day - I went to a street parade attended by tens of thousands of people!
We really made an effort to get into the mood, to throw ourselves into something that has always been quite foreign to us. There was no way, however, that I was going to dress up - I wanted to be able to go out afterwards and not have to feel ridiculous in a costume - and so the blood over the bare head seemed like the perfect compromise. I wasn't even keen to share the white face paint.
It was funny afterwards, walking down the street with that gash on my head. I had a concerned policeman rush up to ask if I was OK at one point, thinking I may have been involved in a post-parade scuffle. I suppose if I'd been in a proper costume, he wouldn't have noticed me at all. I had similar reactions for the rest of the night, even in the bar we went to. It would have been easier if I'd just worn a very loud costume!
Even in the week before the 31st, there were signs of Halloween everywhere. You couldn't escape it. Back in New Zealand, when I was little, we took part in various Halloween events, but it was nothing compared to what I saw in New York, and I guess it's similar throughout the US. Here are some of the scenes we stumbled across.