You know how sometimes the lowest points of our lives become the funniest when you look back on them? Well, Halloween 2010 was one of those times. My son was four and trick-or-treating as one of the transformers. My daughter was two and dressed like a ballerina – though she was really more like a ninja. From the time she learned to walk, she’s had this incredible ability to slip away undetected then hide somewhere small and dark silently until we find her. It’s creepy.
Anyway, while trick-or-treating, my daughter put her ninja ballerina skills to the test and disappeared right in the middle of the biggest, most pimped out Halloween house I’ve ever seen. Lit up pumpkins lined the walkway. Gravestones dotted along the lawn. Ghosts swayed from the trees (I never did verify that those were decorations). Fog machine, creepy soundtrack, the whole shebang. It was like a Halloween store and an amusement park got together and had a baby on their lawn.
My son had one thing on his mind. Candy. So he went running down the walkway toward the tacky house promising tricks and treats. I could see the owners at the door dressed up like characters from The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Now, I’m a regular Frankie fan, but how was I supposed to explain a man in a corset and high heels to a curious four year old? So I ran ahead with my son while my husband was supposed to be watching ninja girl.
After thanking the Rocky cast for the candy, I turned around to see my husband studying the mechanical hand popping up from the ground and our daughter missing. I’m an engineer, was his excuse.
A search party that could rival the FBI ensued. Ten frantic minutes later, we found a chocolate-faced ballerina hanging out with a ghost behind one of the gravestones. Goodbye early bedtime.
Fast forward a couple hours later and ninja baby was asleep in her bed. My son was sitting on our bed watching the Disney Channel with hubby. I was doing some writing at our breakfast bar, not pigging out on the kid’s candy (no, really, I wasn’t). All of the sudden, some black creature from hell came flying straight at my head. I screamed then ducked under the counter. Upon closer inspection, I realized it was a bat. I rolled my eyes at the irony. A bat loose in the house on Halloween. Can we get anymore cliché?
Regardless, it still freaked me out. Have you ever studied a bat’s flight patterns? They are completely chaotic and unpredictable. I know they’re blind and use echolocation, yadda, yadda, yadda. But I think this one was drunk too. Anyway, I was so paranoid the thing would get stuck in my hair, I got down on the ground and crawled – army style – across the kitchen floor, screaming, “Bat! Bat!” My husband came running down the stairs, confused but ready for a battle. I locked myself in the playroom.
After a few minutes, I peeked out the door to see him waving the American flag we usually have hanging outside like he’s practicing for color guard. Later he explained it was the only way to catch the bat without hurting it. A net, somehow, didn’t cross his mind. Whatever. I’ll leave the bat wrangling to him.
So, hubby yelled that the bat flew upstairs where my son was sitting quietly watching Wizards of Waverly Place. Did he bat an eye (no pun intended) that a drunken winged creature was zooming around the room like a helicopter with a broken propeller? Nope. Wizards of Waverly Place is that good.
Hubby followed the bat to our room. He waved the flag, mimicking the erratic patterns of bat flight. Decorations flew off shelves. Pictures fell off walls. Finally, the bat got wrapped up in the flag and both went down in a flurry of red, white, and blue.
And to top it all off, ninja baby threw up chocolate chunks in her bed.
And that was my worst Halloween ever.
Your turn. Any favorite Halloween stories, good or bad?