31 October, 2009
Halloween has come and gone
Avery is in a stupor of post sugar-high, but not as high as her hair. Yes, her first visit to a hair salon, to emerge a mind-numbing hour and a half later as... Holly Golightly. A dress from Tesco, a tiara from Shepherds Bush Market, a cigarette holder and gloves from some skeevy online costumier, all combined for quite the best Halloween costume ever. There were fully five salon employees hovering around her and her entirely silent hairdo creator Leno, providing bobby pins and hair spray at the drop of a hat. Passersby on the pavement stopped to look in the windows. One of the stylists said hesitantly to me, "Do you know that man out there? Because he's waving like crazy," and there was John, driving by in the Cinquecento to pick us up, late as we were in the service of Avery's hair.
On to a fabulous Halloween party at the home of one of Avery's school friends, a plateful of the BEST lasagne from Ottolenghi (I am not making lasagne again until I figure out exactly how to replicate it: carrots, for one thing), washed down with Moet et Chandon. And then chaperoning the trick or treating in Kensington, quite the poshest neighborhood I personally have ever canvassed in search of mindless amounts of high fructose corn syrup.
There was a four-story house covered from top to bottom by a 40-foot square black spider! There was a pathway covered over by arbors of trailing ivy in blazing autumnal colors, flanked on either side by gorgeously carved pumpkins (never mind my usual childish efforts, I enjoy it!). Carvings of galleons in full sail, cats with arched backs, flying ghosts, some in that impossibly sophisticated method that my sister can produce, where your knife does not fully penetrate the pumpkin but skims across the surface so the candles glow from inside. Screaming crowds of tweeners, little crowds of goggle-eyed toddlers clutching at their parents' hands, tiny handbag dogs dressed up as unconvincing devils.
Back to the party for a homely and lovingly created old-fashioned party: Pin the Mould on the Pumpkin, bobbing for apples, throwing apple peels to read the first initial of the name of the man you will marry! Prizes and fairy cakes decorated with butterflies, a sort of Lucky Dip in Jello, a classmate as Puss in Boots, a witch in knee-high Fendi boots, and our own little Truman Capote heroine.
Avery's now closeted in the bathroom, removing her bobby pins. The entire world smells like hair spray. I'm waiting outside in case her head falls off once the pins are all out. All's right with the world. Happy Halloween!