A lovely New Yorker cover from my collection. Edna Eicke has captured a wonderful moment. Everything the night should be, the “ghosts” peering through the gate to judge if the walk is worth the risk. I think the lighted windows highlighting the porch seal the deal. I love the importance of the porch, the threshold, the approach to the door. So much anticipation, exhilaration, consternation. You get it. Sometimes with haunters its meant to be a very long walk, even when its a hop, skip and jump to the door from the sidewalk. Like running the bases through a gauntlet, real or imagined. With only the thought of reaching the porch, the door, safety always to be found at home, even if for just a moment, someone else’s. A lovely tradition I think. Thanksgiving has the turkey shared with family and friends, Christmas gets the tree with thoughtful gifts to be given out amongst nearest and dearest. On Halloween we invite neighbors and strangers alike to our doors. We wait upon the knock, the doorbell, we pause and savor the shrieks and hesitant approach of children and adults through the keyhole or from between the blinds. The magical ‘say “trick or treat!” and enter’ that signals a kindred spirit whereupon we open our doors and distribute rewards for stopping by. Simply marvelous.
I have attended the first day opening of the Rogers Gardens Halloween Event for the past few years and I will be there early to enjoy it this year as it looks to be especially creepy. The four rooms they usually design/decorate traverse beautiful to bizarre, worth the stop if you are near Corona del Mar, Ca. See you there? Click pic to link to site.
The weather here on the west coast is definitely Fall-like at last, chill temperatures and brisk gusts of wind remind me of why I prefer this time of year. Time to break out the scarves and mittens, flannels and fuzzy slippers. Just to make cozying up that much more enjoyable. The approaching Thanksgiving holiday makes me pause and reflect, as I still see pumpkins decorating porches and sills and tabletops. We always save one or two from October to enjoy through November – a bright orange reminder – it’s interesting how the pumpkin, the idea of it, transitions from the herald of giving treats to the herald of giving thanks. Many of us will close the holiday with that slice of spicy sweetness. It’s a fitting way to bookend Autumn. Enjoy this New Yorker cover from 1973, a house simply celebrating the season.
New Yorker Magazine, Stevenson, 1973
As the nights grow longer, deeper and darker, this may help while away those hours between sunset and sunrise.
This is a quick bit of video footage taken by my husband (Redwire), he is very proud of the automated cauldron prop, it was the first mechanical prop I’d asked for and I think he did an amazing job putting it together. This is the walk up to my front door and the entrance to our “Shoppe”. The music overlay is from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, episode “Hush” a great piece of music called “Golf Claps” by Christophe Beck.
Just click here…Strolling to the Shoppe door
I hope that everyone had a Halloween filled with rare wonders and spooky spectacles. Professor Auds and Doctor Enns Malevolent Mercantile was a big hit, we had visitors from as far away as Connecticut and enjoyed folks coming right in and looking over the rooms that were decorated for our shoppe concept. Photo ops were high and we were really excited by the turnout this year, the neighborhood was lively with great displays and one of our neighbors was handing out bbq hot dogs to the parents! The weather was what you hope for, crisp, clear, just a hint of breeze (helps with candle flicker). Our “Party” was last night and its nice as a kind of dry run for the Big Night. Many thanks to all who support and assist. Hope all you Haunters out there had equally splendid evenings.
I look up and down our street, the porches have gone dark, the jackos have been pulled in, so far I’ve resisted the leftover candy. That good kind of exhaustion is settling in. 2013 a very good season. We had a skeleton theme to support the Malevolent Mercantile concept based on a weathervane designed by the great Edward Gorey. I received one for my birthday last year and it was our mascot of sorts. I wrote this in honor of that, and I post it here to close out Halloween 2013. (Pics and vids to follow in coming days). Into the Cauldron will continue throughout the year so I hope you keep coming back.
Twilight heralds the coming Eve
and hastens Spirits to reprieve
as boney denizens take flight
Along the Currents they alight
Above the cloudveil of the skies
that masks Their path from gazing eyes
On whirlwinds They softly drift
Exulting in this yearly gift
If clustered cloud should clear a view
And chance should cast your eye on through
Perhaps you’ll glimpse Their spectral trail
Outlined by Moon set low and pale
And should you happen to espy
These knobby specters gliding by
Don’t wonder why They’ve passed the Gate
’tis Halloween They celebrate
They’ll skim the coasts and float o’er hills
Defiant in Their ardent wills
They’ll fright the throng, a fitting task
Down lanes bedecked with mischief’s mask
This flight, this dance, this soulful weave
This Queen of Nights – this Hallow’s Eve!
Well the final days are slipping by and are filled with lists and projects and re-dos and nudging. All to get it just right. Furiously working by day to test at night. The timing this year allows for a pre-weekend no doubt filled with parties and these are nice as they extend, broaden the holiday since the Big Night is still to come.
I am especially glad this year that the streets roundabout where I live are particularly festive this year, no less than 16 homes nearby have some sort of lighting or scape or even pumpkins adorning yards and porches. This is quite a rare circumstance and I wonder what it means, such surge in activity that I’ve not seen in many a season. Its reassuring and simply delightful to see. My excitement, anticipation, even consternation are on the rise in these coming up days and I will smile as I look outside my windows to those orange lights across the street, to the cobwebs draped across bushes in that yard down the corner, at pumpkins standing proud, orange and round dotting the landscape here and there as I think of the children, families that will soon use them to connect the dots as some primitive GPS for sourcing candy. Soon now, very soon.
As quoted from Sam Freeman’s article in issue 35 of Make Magazine “…The easiest way to automate a haunted house is to bribe your friends to hide behind curtains and pull ropes all night…”
Well, who doesn’t love old school? Or I guess you can try it this way, check out this Controller to automate your Haunt
Hey! This blog is only hours old and I’m already adding new items to read. Haunters Lot is an ode to fellow Haunters everywhere (you know who you are), but especially to that little kid down the block furiously checking out Oriental Trading Company online store for this years themed decor, and driving his mom to distraction.