Sunday, November 2, 2008

How I Spent Halloween in Horse Town

On Halloween night Ron and I walked across the street to our neighbor's house. She hosted a small outdoor potluck because several of us live on a steep incline, and the trick-or-treaters are reluctant to slog up the hill, sacks o' goodies in tow, to knock on our doors in the dark. So instead we gathered in the front yard of her house at the bottom of the slope. We dined on my chicken chili, someone else's homemade pasta salad and another person's fire-roasted hot dogs. A row of tables were set up and each of us contributed a bowl of candy so the neighborhood kids could stop by and grab a few handfuls while we busily chatted away and stuffed our faces with adult fare.

Where was Wally? He was cozy in his waterproof turnout rug, munching on a bucket of oat hay pellets and carrots. Wally has a perfect view of the entire street below him, but I believe he was too engrossed in his dinner to care that around 8:00 p.m. a large trolley pulled by a pair of blond Belgian draft horses came cruising down the street.

Since we've only lived here a year and a half, Ron and I weren't familiar with this holiday Welcome Wagon. Apparently the hitch is owned by the family that runs the sandwich shop and deli in town. During the holidays they deck out the horses and the trolley in twinkling lights, load up the seats with guests, and make a goodwill tour of the town. On Halloween the little lights strung around the trolley and draped across the Belgians' harnesses were orange, but I'm confident that in another few weeks they'll be red and green and some pine bows and red velvet ribbons will be added to the decor.

Even though we heard the rhythmical jingling of the harness chains long before the trolley approached, it was still quite a surprise to have the team of pale horses saunter past our jack-o-lanterns, our fire pit and our buffet of warm comfort food. It certainly isn't something you see every night.

"Happy Halloween!" the trolley riders called to us.

"Happy Halloween!" we replied.

And then the trolley and the Belgians clip-clopped further down the street, into the deep inky darkness of a late October night.

Now that was a memorable Halloween. And it was yet another example of why it's so great to live in a community with the nickname "Horsetown, USA."

Wally and I hope you had a fun time on Halloween!


Anonymous said...

Hey Cindy,

I put my post under the wrong blog - I scrolled all the way down and commented under the fire and windstorm subject - I'm new to this blogging stuff so please forgive me - I was commenting on how your town sounds like a great place to live!


Cindy Hale said...

Oh, no problem Becky! I read all the responses and comments so I would've discovered you at some point. Welcome!

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