Posted by: christinelaennec | October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Certain streets in Aberdeen are full of ghouls and ghosts tonight – both wandering the streets and inside the houses!  Michael carved a splendid Jack-o-lantern:

Aberdonian Jack-o-Lantern

The Dafter was well enough to go out Trick-or-Treating for a short while, especially as the weather has been peculiarly mild and still:


Here in Scotland you have to perform for your treat.  Most of the children tell jokes (“Where do vampires go on holiday?”  “The Dead-iterranean”) but the Dafter sang a song she’d made up the words to.  She got double sweets for her singing at one door!  And lastly, here is what the bakers have been busy making:

Ghoulish baked goods

I hope you’re all enjoying the spooky season.



  1. Ooooh! Spooky Dracula! Happy Halloween!

  2. Hi Christine! I love that the trick-or-treaters have to perform for their treats. We should institute that policy here in the States!

  3. Here in Australia we have very little “tradition” associated with Halloween. In recent years it seems to me that we have taken part of the American practice, so that kids here:
    – dress up in ‘scary’ outfits
    – knock on doors and get sweets (aka candy)

    If sweets aren’t given you’re likely to get eggs thrown at your house!
    No performing, no tricks, no baked goods, no apple-bobbing, very little pumpkin carving. It’s commercial, retailer-driven practice.
    (Do I sound cynical?)

  4. Guising, lassie, guising! None of this trick or treating stuff! So glad the Dafter was well enough to go out. And good for her doing something original. When I was at primary school each class had to learn a poem off by heart to recite when out guising. You could tell which class they were in by the poem. That gave a clue as to who they were – the main aspect of the evening was to guess who was behind the (homemade, rather than bought from Tesco, disguise). Since my mother was a much-loved primary school teacher we had the whole school troop through our house. One year there was a particularly long poem from one class – we had guisers queuing up to get in because of the lengthy performances inside!

  5. Neat photos! I love that the “trick or treaters” must perform for their treats – what a great tradition!

  6. Great Halloween pictures. Good to hear your daughter was well enough to enjoy trick-or-treating. I loved to hear that in Scotland the kids have to perform to earn their treat. I have no recollection of halloween in the 10 years I lived in England… maybe because I had no children then.. The bakers did a great job!!!

  7. Thank you everyone! Yes, I think performing for your treat is a good tradition. It’s interesting that this aspect of the traditional “guising” (from “disguising” I believe?) has remained, while the rest has become Americanised.

    Linda, I’m sorry to say that the term “guising” is unknown to the younger generation here at least. My neighbour (in her 30s), who went with us, said, “We used to call it guising in my day”. I’ve heard stories from friends in the Highlands about how thrilling it was to be truly disguised on the night, and go roaming around the night with a freedom and anonymity unknown at any other time. When you live in a tiny community, anonymity must be a thrill!

    Thanks to everyone for your well-wishes to the Dafter. She is not hugely better but has been to school, for one lesson only, several days in the last week. Back to the nurse for more blood tests today. She is very happy that I have bought her *sparklers* for bonfire night tomorrow, as she won’t be able to go watch the big municipal fireworks display.

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