Reason #76 of Why I Love Romania
There is virtually no celebration of Halloween here! No witchy costumes. No creepy spider webs hanging all over the trees. No giant, demonic-looking cats with glowing red eyes in the yard of the man across the street that gave my daughters nightmares last fall. Sure, there is the random bar or club putting on a Halloween party as an excuse for all night drunken-fest, like in the States, but it is early October and I have seen zero signs of this impending creep-fest “holiday.” And for this, I am very thankful.
I never really liked Halloween. Sure, I loved mass quantities of candy as a kid, but I have never been a costume kind of person. It always stressed me out to try to figure something out to wear. We never celebrated Halloween with our kids. We gave away candy when we lived in trick-or-treated neighborhoods, because it’s just fun and you never want to be the crabby, stingy neighbors that never smile or have fun. But we just didn’t subject our kids to all the witch costumes and pitchfork-carrying devils prowling the streets in the dark. “It’s just something fun to do,” you might say, but, I don’t know, there’s just something creepy about it all.
So, you might think Romania would be the Halloween capital of the world, housing the real, live Transylvania in it’s backyard, but the Dracula of Bram Stoker is not glorified here at all–at least that I’ve seen–and you’d probably get some eyes rolled at you if you came over here gushing over vampires and werewolves and stuff. The real Dracula, Vlad Tepeș, is viewed as somewhat of a hero here, delivering the nation from the invading Ottoman Turks…even if he chose impalement as his favorite means of torture and murder. Wikipedia states, “Estimates of the number of his victims range from 40,000 to 100,000, comparable to the cumulative number of executions over four centuries of European witch hunts.” Creepy. But it’s not celebrated or glorified here, really. It is interesting, though, that with all the movies made about Bram Stoker’s Dracula, there haven’t been any major ones about the real one.
Anyway, I’m posting this because I had completely forgotten about Halloween (thankfully) until I saw some posts about it on Facebook from friends back in the States. And that gave me one more reason to love Romania.