By: Larissa | October 30, 2014 | (11) Comments

YA Midnight Reads

Today is very exciting because we have Faye from The Social Potato on the blog with a guest post on why she loves Halloween.

Blogger Guest Post: Faye


Whenever we think of Halloween, the first thing that comes to mind is trick-or-treat. This activity, where you put on a whacky costume (the scary factor seems optional now) and knock on the doors in your neighborhood hoping you impress them enough to give you a treat, pretty much symbolizes what Halloween has evolved into since its conception. But if you’re me and you live in Manila, Philippines, where such a thing is rather uncommon (read: nonexistent), Halloween is just another excuse to put on something sexy (with a touch of scary?), go to a club, and dance the night away. Who cares about ghosts?! It’s a social event, ladies and gents.

But if you’re me, and if you spent the first 16 years of your life in a province far, far away from the busy and lively Capital, then Halloween may mean something else. No, there’s still no trick-or-treat (I have no idea why this never became a thing… it must be so fun to go on stranger’s doors to ask for food!) and there’s definitely not much partying, but there would be allegedly true ghost stories on news programs, a lot of ghost hunting and hiding beneath blankets.

Ahhh, that was the life.

I remember, more than ten years ago, when it was Halloween, my cousins, siblings and I, would huddle around the TV waiting for the primetime news program to go on, because there would be a one hour segment that would exclusively broadcast “true” ghost stories. This would range from white ladies appearing in the middle of a certain street (that’s infamous for the huge Balete trees planted by the sidewalks), to kapres (giant tree guardians eternally smoking tobacco), to aswangs (a vampire-like ghoul-ish being that has wings. She is very scary…) landing on roofs and visiting pregnant women to eat their unborn children. I remember each of us would be scared out of our wits, but we would still be entranced and would keep watching despite our imaginations growing wild with the dark creatures.

“Do you believe any of it?” we would ask ourselves.

“Naw, I don’t believe it! It’s all just in your imagination!” one would respond back.

“But, I saw one once! A ghost!” another cousin would reply. “And just last week, a classmate of mine heard the flapping of wings coming from their roof.”

And on and on our conversation would go, until we would be in one bedroom, huddled together again and sharing ghost stories that they swear were true, and we would eat it all up and treat them as fact. We would be scared, but excited, and would go out into the empty streets (and imagine that across the world, they would be full of children carrying sweets and candies and we would all go, “Man, I’m so envious…”) masquerading as ghost hunters, and run away at the first sign of a rustle from the bushes. We would consider playing the Ouija board to contact a spirit, then pale at the very last second and withdraw, pretending to be bored of the game just so we can squeeze our way out of it.

No trick-or-treating, no partying, but we all had fun just the same. We had each other’s company, and we felt safe knowing we weren’t alone in our fear for the unknown. We took our camaraderie as safety, and even though we were afraid of that shadow or that rustle, we braved checking them out because we had each other.
Yes, Halloween may be more fun than scary for many people, but for me it was both, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I don’t do those things anymore and my cousins and I have all drifted away when we got older, but with the impending Halloween this year, I reminisce back to those joyful years and remain thankful that I was able to experience this once-in-a-year event meaningfully with friends and family who I trusted.

PS: And if you’re wondering, yes, I do believe in ghosts and have encountered many of them. And aswangs are real. Don’t believe anything saying otherwise.

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Larissa was born and still is living in the land of ice, snow and maple syrup. She's 18 years old and really has no idea what to do with her life lately. Larissa's plans are constantly changing--though there’s one thing has remained constant throughout her seventeen years, and that’s reading. It takes her to another world and puts her into impossible situations and that’s why she loves it so much.

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11 Responses to Blogger Guest Post: Faye @ The Social Potato

  1. Awww great story Faye! It sounds like you have some really fond memories of family time around Halloween, ghost stories would definitely be fun and memorable too. Really wish we celebrated in Australia, but that is not the case!
    Jeann @ Happy Indulgence recently posted…Five Ways to Fall by K.A. Tucker Review: Cocky playboy meets scorned wifeMy Profile

  2. I’m sorry to hear that you don’t do trick or treating, it’s great! I’m not a party girl, so the whole sexy costumes, get drunk thing doesn’t really appeal to me.

    Telling ghost stories sounds fun! I’ve actually heard of Aswangs from the tv show Grimm. I really hope Aswangs aren’t real they creep me out, but I believe in ghosts. Living in an old house that seems to have a life of it’s own has totally convinced me! I enjoyed hearing about Halloween in the Philippians. 🙂
    Molly Mortensen recently posted…Cipher By Aileen ErinMy Profile

  3. Lexa Cain says:

    What great stories! I’m sorry you don’t get to trick-or-treat, but those scary tales sound like a great way to pass an evening with friends. Aswangs sound creeeeepy!! Happy Halloween!! 🙂
    Lexa Cain recently posted…Celebrate: Adventure on Nemesis Mountain & FreebiesMy Profile

  4. Well, when you put trick-or-treating in the context of knocking on strangers’ doors for food, it doesn’t sound nearly as fun. LOL This post definitely goes a long way in explaining your penchant for reading horror stories though, Faye! I’m a big wimp as far as scary stuff is concerned, so I’ll take candy & parties over your version any day of the week. 😉
    Carmel @ Rabid Reads recently posted…Question: Do You Ever Wish There Was No Sex?My Profile

  5. What a neat story, thank you for sharing those memories with us. We enjoy sitting out around a fire and handing out treats to the little ones.
    kimbacaffeinate recently posted…Sky Pirates by Liesel SchwarzMy Profile

  6. Thanks for having me guys! ^_^
    Faye le Potato recently posted…ARC Review: Stray by Elissa SussmanMy Profile

  7. *high fives* Awesome post, Faye! As I was reading your entry, I can’t help but grin and shake my head because I’ve been through the same phase. I remembered me and a bunch of my friends reading True Philippine Ghost Stories (remember this?) and getting scared out of our wits. 🙂
    Miguel @ The Quirky Reader recently posted…We Were Liars by E. LockhartMy Profile

  8. Giselle says:

    Omg those “true” ghost stories freak me out. I used to spend my days at the call center where I used to work (aka hell) browsing sites where people would tell their weird encounters and ghost stories and I would not be able to sleep afterwards haha. I do think I would like that tradition! But trick-or-treating is definitely something super fun, though it is kind of a bizarre tradition if you really think about it lol! I remember going out with a pillow case as a bag and coming home with it overloaded with candy, dumping it, and then going back out. Omg I’d still have candy left by next Halloween (though usually my least favorite ones haha). I never did much of the partying thing though. I grew up in a very small town so getting to any party was too much effort for me >.< But even now I live in the city and I prefer spending this holiday with my family so in the end that's what matters! 🙂
    Giselle recently posted…Want To Review For Xpresso Reads?My Profile

  9. Hi, Faye! So glad to read a post from you again. And even happier to see you sharing what Halloween is like in the Philippines. The trick-or-treating and costumes are definitely something that has only started happening in the recent years here. In the past, we always resorted to ghost stories and Okatokat marathons (hahahahaha!) so it’s a little bit strange to see kids dressed as cartoon characters for Halloween. I think if you’re Pinoy and you’re going trick-or-treating, you should dress up as a manananggal or kapre or something more local.
    Joy @ The Bookshelf Intruder recently posted…This Month on The Bookshelf Intruder: I think I need a co-bloggerMy Profile

  10. Pili says:

    Fantastic story Faye! I’m a real wuss so I prefer the dressing up, reading not-all-that-scary stories and watching Tim Burton movies! Here in Spain we don’t really celebrate Halloween either, and I always wish I was in the US around that time! Once me and my ex were house sitting in Wisconsin for his sister and we handed out candy and then watched movies and it was quite a lot of fun!
    Pili recently posted…Last Will And Testament by Dahlia Adler: Excerpt!!My Profile

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