Dulce o travesura?

2 November 2006
4:03 PM

Tuesday night, Maureen and I were at home reading when we heard a bunch of kids outside. She went to check on the situation and came back with the report: trick-or-treaters. It turns out that Chile has been adopting the Halloween traditions common in the U.S. over the last few years. Now we had a bunch of masked children on our hands. For my part, I had forgotten that it was Halloween until that morning. How embarrassing! They kids had come to what they thought a sure-fire Halloween hit, the gringo house, and we were caught unprepared.

Thankfully, when my dad visited last week he brought a few sacks of candy acquired during prime candy-acquisition season in the U.S., the pre-Halloween weeks. We broke open the sacks of Snickers, Butterfingers, and Almond Joys for the trick-or-treaters. By sheer luck, we were saved from a lot of embarrassment. It’s clear, though, that not all the children are veterans in the Halloween traditions. I asked them what they had to say, and only some of them responded dulce o travesura! I asked one boy with a Dracula mask, “Who are you?” He lifted up his mask and said, “Manuel.”

I have no doubt that they’ll get it soon enough. For one, kids will do anything to get candy. And after all, Chileans just started throwing baby showers (the word in Spanish is “baby shower”) a few years ago and now they are consummate pros at all sorts of showers, including bridal showers and new house showers.