Call me brave or stupid, both probably. In 2022, I fell prey to two teenagers who convinced me the previous two COVID-laden years had leaned heavily on their social life and consequentially caused major mental health issues.
All of the above is probably true but I was to learn that spooks are not the worst apparitions that could befall a beguiled septuagenarian on Halloween night. You’d think I would have wondered why not one of the other seven adults in these girls’ extended families offered to chauffeur them to the newly resurrected Wynnum Halloween Parade, but it seems all were busily committed to washing their hair, polishing their cars or doing their desperately overdue tax that night.
These two 15-year-old Goths’ everyday attire would have more than adequately satisfied the dress code for any ghoul and demon gathering, but of course they had to excel.
Only three quarters of an hour late, we left.
While driving I gave the obligatory lecture in case we were split up. Where to meet; keep your phones on.
Little did I know their intention was to split up … from me.
I had hardly stopped the car when they were out and off.
I hobbled along in my least slow waddle, realising short of a turbo-charged broomstick, I was never going to catch these two nubile young nymphs in this life.
We say teenagers are glued to their phones, obviously not on this occasion. I tried desperately for half an hour to contact them and then decided to watch the passing parade, while driven to a state of anxiety with images of helicopter parents abusing me whilst real helicopters flown by police scoured the bayside shoreline looking for my wayward responsibilities.
An hour later my phone rang: ‘Are you okay, nana’, a sweet voice says.
Of course, what could possibly happen to me, alone and surrounded by hundreds of hyped-up supernatural beings on Halloween. Whilst I was panicking at the passing parade of ghosts, vampires and Ghostbusters, they had been on the beach, indulging in a seafood extravaganza. It was so cool, nana.
For those brave enough, the Wynnum Halloween Parade is on Saturday, October 28 this year. Even for us oldies it is heaps of fun.
All the way back to the car I had to endure the over-enthusiastic rantings of two teenagers about how cool the parade was.
Now don’t tell me whether Halloween is a traditional Celtic festival or an American beat up. I don’t care.
But I know this. Next year these girls will be able to drive themselves, so on Halloween night I will be at home in my den satiating myself on a very large goblet of blood-red wine.