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Keeping a Canadian Halloween alive in HK

Last year, was my first Halloween in Hong Kong. And unlike my 20-odd Halloweens in Northern Canada, the warm temperature here meant that for the first time in my life I didn’t need to wear my winter jacket on-top of my costume. Back home the cold forces even a ballerina to wear snow boots on Halloween.

I’ll admit, riding the subway as Medusa certainly got me more attention than I was used to back home. Dressed in a gold dress that gave me the perfect sultry look, accompanied by a custom made gold crown But I knew, I wasn’t turning anyone into stone, with the jolts of neck turns coming from my fellow commuters.

Amy Dunne from Gone Girl (2016) and Medusa (2017)

Upon arriving at a house party, with nearly everyone in last minute and thrown together costumes, a lady greeted me and quipped, “Wow, you must take Halloween seriously!”. To which my reply was, “Of course I do!” because where I come from Halloween is taken very seriously not just by children but adults too.

Growing up In Canada, each year we would pile into our parent’s cars on Halloween, finishing off one block after another, with Mom or Dad taking us wherever there was the promise of “good” candy. Our costumes carefully made to fit over our coats. It was probably the only time you’d see a ballerina in snow boots. But, every Canadian child knows that knocking on doors for candy comes with an expiration date. One simply can’t be 25 and turn up with a pillowcase in hand and a monster mask on a door-step. So, I lost the candy, but never the costumes.

Ballerina (1998) and Belle from Beauty and the Beast (1999)

I loved dressing up then, and I love dressing up now. Mostly because it meant bonding time with my mother and grandmother Every year, they would hear me out on who I wanted to me, and no matter what, we made me into her. No store costumes or props for them. Grandma would pull out her sewing machine, and Mom her spread of makeup. Each of my costumes were a labour of their love.

Witch (2000) Minnie Mouse (1996)

To this day, I still don’t buy packaged costumes and enjoy hunting for each piece of clothing and prop and customize my own personalized look. Already planning, and putting together my ensemble.. I don’t want to brag, but my costume this year is going to be my best yet..And believe me when I say, put in a bit more personal imagination and effort into your costumes. The compliments you will get will make it real worth while. Happy Halloween Local Hooders!

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