The day begins early.
I choose the grocery cart with the yellow shopping list left in the basket.
The purple cursive swirls into “Daddy’s p.b.” and “waffles x 2.”
I notice that none of the checkout people or employees are wearing a costume as in years gone by. Perhaps, it’s because seniors work the first shift at registers, and feel their covid masks, in black or white, support the spirit of the day.
Weather forecasts call for rain later in the day when most of the trick or treating is over, and the candy counting begins in earnest. Memories of trick or treating in wind and raincoats come flooding in.
Over at the optometrist’s office, the assistants/receptionists are decked out as colorful winged creatures. A patient, wearing a black blouse festooned with pumpkins, asks one of them if she is dressed as “a spotted lanternfly.” In a huff the retort is “No, I am a butterfly.”
The optometrist, in furry feline ears that match his strawberry blond shaved head, tells me that the theme this year is flora/fauna. His assistant removes her butterfly cape looped around her shoulders after a long day of maneuvering with them while looking into dilated pupils. She will be leaving soon to catch up with her grandchildren and other pupils in costume after school.
It’s cloudy and warm for the last day of October. Perfect for the ghoulish holiday. The horse farm, at the end of my road, is hosting a “trunk or treat” and cars are parked bumper-to-bumper as the little ones are led by the hand into the field. I wonder what the horses are thinking.
When I get home, the groceries I dropped off earlier, are in the kitchen on the floor waiting to be put away. I pick up the yellow note that I saved from the shopper using the cart before me, to see what else she may have listed, intending to use it to write a poem or story. Instead — stuck between its folds I discover a wad of blue bubble gum. The perfect trick to my treat of a note left behind.