Sunday, October 20, 2013

A French Halloween?

What happens at Halloween in France? A couple years ago, in the mid 1990's, Halloween came fully into the daylight. In stores all over Paris and France, counters had been covered with pumpkins, spider webs and witches, and French kids tried out a new custom: trick or treating.

However, after its initial impetus it gradually lost much of its attraction. The whole Halloween ritual never really caught on, and "la Toussaint" (All Saints Day) still remains the widely honored national holiday. All Saints Day, on November 1st, is deeply set in French minds, and many French families go to cemeteries with fresh flowers and tools to clean the graves and honor their dearly departed.

Of course, some bars and restaurants maintained their special Halloween nights, mostly in Paris, but "celebrating" Halloween in France remains very commercial. If you are looking for a spooky costume, some Halloween-style candy to give to trick or treaters, or even a fairly-sized pumpkin, you will really have to scout around!

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