So I thought it would be a good idea to go and watch the village halloween parade. It WAS a good idea and I'm glad I went, but I was also so glad to get back to my hotel room afterwards!
As I set out, the Empire State Building was lit with special colours.
My big mistake occurred when streets were unexpectedly closed on my approach. The parade was to go down 6th Avenue and in a moment of stupidity I crossed 6th Avenue to find a vantage point. I found my vantage point, but it meant I would be captive on the wrong side of the avenue for the next 2+ hours! One hour of parade was OK. By the start of the second hour it was just more of the same and I'd had enough. There are only so many ensembles of zombies dancing to Thriller I can take.
My vantage point was about 10 blocks up from the start. But for some reason it was nearly 1/2 hour before the first characters reached us, which was frustrating many in the crowd who were more than 10-12 deep by this time. There was a massive police presence too, both to contain the crowd and maintain vigilance. Saw some really good community PR from the NYPD.
My good move was to leave my big camera behind. It would have been awkward to navigate crowds with and a constant concern. I managed a few rough snaps on my phone; enough to remind me. But after a while it got too hard and I gave up.
The parade is a community event. As a result it was odd mix of "well coordinated, high effort" and "could barely be arsed, just wanted to walk in a parade".
As the parade seemed like it was drawing to a close I decided that walking towards the start point would be my best way of being able to cross the avenue. It ended up being a long, slow walk, shoulder to shoulder, street after street, until finally I reached a point where the barriers were being removed. Yay! Then it was just a relatively familiar trek back to the hotel, with the addition of colourful halloween characters added into the mix. Having said that, it was a fun party atmosphere. There will be many sore heads tomorrow, I have no doubt! I had dressed warmly but by now it was freezing and starting to rain.
So what do I think of this Halloween? Well, firstly I just want to make it clear: if you're into Halloween, good on you, knock yourself out, glad you like it, have one for me. But it just doesn't resonate with me. It seems to me that half of Halloween revellers want to look as macabre as possible and the other half want to look like … well just about anything! The macabre has never appealed to me, and what Halloween has got to do with dressing like Mickey Mouse (for example) is beyond me. Just saying, that's how I feel about it.