Oberlin Blogs

The Month of Halloween

November 4, 2014

Radia Lahlou ’18

Halloween is, in my opinion, by far the best and most exciting holiday. In fact, I enjoy it so much that sometimes I forget the entire month of October isn't just called "Halloween," and that the actual event lasts only a day. Every year, my mother likes to remind me of my first Halloween, when instead of eating the candy I got from trick-or-treating, I solemnly observed it. I was entranced by the pretty colors and thought that the treats I had collected were only to look at. Within the next year, I very rapidly realized how wrong I was, and the dopamine release candy brought to my three-year-old brain was exhilarating. The mixture of a sugar high and getting to dress up quickly made Halloween my favorite holiday. An entire day completely dedicated to candy and costumes seemed almost too good to be true!

Two children, age 3 or 4, dressed for Halloween. One is a dinosaur and the other is a princess.
Taken in 2000 with my friend Bryson... My facial expression indicates that I obviously think there are more important things to do on Halloween than take pictures. Primarily: get as much candy as possible!!!


Many princess dresses later, I realized, very sadly, that I was at an age where it was no longer acceptable to trick-or-treat. I put my tiaras away and stayed indoors handing out candy to the neighborhood children, silently eating chocolate bars in sadness. Okay, not in complete sadness. Chocolate is pretty cool, and I've always liked greeting trick-or-treaters.

This year, I got to celebrate Halloween twice—once over fall break at home, and once in Oberlin. The university in the town I come from has an annual "unofficial Halloween" celebration two weeks before the real deal, so of course I took this as an opportunity to haphazardly put together a costume. By participating in unofficial Halloween, I came to realize that I like party culture loads more at Oberlin than in Carbondale. People don't dance nearly enough, and aren't as friendly! Also, a car happened to get tipped over...

Described in caption.
Halloween part 1! My friend Tim and I put together this Popeye and Olive Oyl costume the day of unofficial Halloween. I think we did a pretty okay job.


Halloween at Oberlin also consisted of another last-minute costume, but I think it came together quite well. My friend Isabella Miller and I decided to go as Lichtenstein paintings. With the help of a much-needed practice run, our fairly simple and fun costumes turned out to be a success. Halloween did not disappoint— I was happy to see how many students dressed up, and was especially impressed by those who decided to stay in costume all day.

Dots and lines make Radia's face look like a drawing.
A very dramatic Lichtenstein photograph, taken by my lovely roommate. The dots took forever to paint on.


Although I had a good time at both Halloweens, I found there was a significant lack of candy. My chemistry teacher gave us a fruit roll-up, but he also gave us a test, so they kind of cancel each other out... In fact, I think that after I write this post I'm going to go to Ben Franklin's to buy starbursts. Or maybe I'll just ask my roommate if I can eat some of hers; it seems as though she had the idea of purchasing half-price candy before me.

Other things that have happened:

  • I have grown a strong appreciation for my own bed and shower. Being able to not wear shower shoes for a week during fall break was beautiful.
  • I lost my beloved camera on an airplane, and after many phone calls, IT WAS FOUND! Although I should have been more careful, this experience reminded me that people are generally good, and that's really comforting. Yay for good people!
  • I've really missed cooking my own food, so I took fall break as an opportunity to cook a lot. Now that I'm back, all I want to do is make my own meals. I'm taking this as a sign to go on a co-op wait list.
  • The trees outside of Barrows Hall have begun to grow barren... Winter is slowly approaching and I don't know if I'm ready to say goodbye to fall.
Trees on the quad
Taken right before fall break, when the leaves had only just begun to turn yellow. I wanted to do a before and after picture, but my camera has yet to come back into my possession.

Coming back to Oberlin after fall break was astoundingly difficult for the first couple of days, especially since I thought my camera was stolen. Many of my friends very adamantly stated how excited they were to be back, and it was odd to me that I didn't feel the same. Even though I love my school and the people I've met, I'm still very attached to home. I have a feeling that the first time coming back from a break is the hardest, and that I'll get accustomed to coming and going with time. Getting back into a routine was really helpful, and now that I've adjusted, I'm happy to be back. Although I can't wait to go home for Thanksgiving, I'm excited to see what surprises the month of November will bring! (Hopefully not snow...)

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