Monday, October 31, 2016

Noche de Brujas

Noche de Brujas is what Halloween is called here in Peru. October 31st is primarily a religious holiday - All Souls Day. Trick or treating is starting to become more popular here as the population of ex-pats grows and the local children catch on to the idea of going door to door for candy. That said it is still not widespread as buying candy and giving it away plus purchasing children's costumes are luxuries simply beyond the means of many Peruvians. It makes the aisles of candy in the US big-box stores seem even more obscene. There is no Goodwill or Good Sammy or Salvation Army thrift store here where one can buy a second-hand costume. I asked our housekeeper if any children in her neighbourhood go trick or treating and she said no, because no one can afford the costumes. It's another reminder of how lucky we are to live the life that we do. We live the life that many can only dream of.
Marge and Maggie.
Halloween in Arequipa is also noted for being the day with the worst traffic of the entire year. That seems like a bold statement, given how bad the traffic is on any other day, but Halloween traffic is ridiculous. The first two years we were here, we were invited to Halloween parties held by other ex-pats on the other side of the city. Our usual 15-minute journey to get there took almost an hour each time. This year we're staying in and celebrating our 13th wedding anniversary - yep, on Halloween.  
This year I volunteered to host the annual Halloween party for our group of ex-pat children. We are very lucky that our house has a giant backyard that is perfect for outdoor parties. It was a lot of work to get everything prepared but it was a team effort and the result was a very fun party that was enjoyed by young and old alike. As you can see from the photo I went as Marge Simpson with Miss B as Maggie. N went as Batman and P channeled his inner Keith Richards and went as a pirate (in his pirate costume, large pirate hat and beer in hand, he looked like Keith Richards in The Pirates of the Caribbean). 

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