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Emerging From Fog

Posted on Oct 24, 2015

Picture it:

A big L-shaped yard. There’s a graveyard near the gate, with gravestones and bones inside, and crows and skulls on the fence. A skeleton squirms and cries, trying to escape. There’s a spook at the garage door. A skeletal dog barking. A zombie wailing in a stump. A creepy baby taunts you. A skull drops, with eyes flashing…

This is the scene in my back yard this evening. Or was, until I put away all the moving pieces, turned off all the lanterns and lights, unplugged the projection light, the strobe light, and the fog machine.

Is it scary? Meh. Probably not. But is it fun? You bet! Not only was it fun to put it all together, but it’s fun to walk through. This back yard is spooky even if there’s nothing in it!!!

As I was planning this haunted back yard, I told my husband how I was going to arrange everything – zombie here, graveyard there, skeleton here. Then I told him I would invite the neighbourhood – deliver invitations to everyone by hand – and I would invite friends via email. I told him I could post it on the internet and his eyes filled with panic! He HATES the internet! He pictured thousands of people showing up, tromping through our yard, coming back when we aren’t home and stealing everything that wasn’t tied down.

I promised him I wouldn’t advertise it on the internet. *sigh*

I also didn’t invite the neighbours, put up signs, or email friends or schoolmates. I told a few people at the playground, I wrote it in my blog, I tweeted it a few times. But I didn’t push it.

My 8 year old said to me numerous times today “what if nobody shows up?” I replied “So what? I’m having fun putting it together!” but inside I thought “Gleep! Well, that’ll suck!”

Aaaaand… nobody showed up.

At 7:05, my little ray of sunshine said “See? I told you nobody would show up!” Harumph. I was annoyed. Not annoyed that nobody showed up, just annoyed that she was right. LOL!

After 8pm I decided to shut ‘er down. Once everything that needed to come in was brought in, I promptly put on my pjs – it’s cold out there so I needed some fuzziness to warm up my bones!

I grabbed my daughter, kissed her head and said “it’s okay that nobody showed up! I got some fresh air, some exercise, and I had a lot of fun putting it all together.” From the fog of the back yard came this lesson: don’t do it for others, do it for yourself. I hope that’s what she got from it, and not some after-school special tripe.

Was I disappointed? Meh, maybe a little. Was it worth it? HELLS YEAH!!! Now I know how the fog machine works, I know what it takes to set off my little army of ghouls, and I know how nice the front yard can look with all the lights! It’s not Vegas-nice, and it’s nowhere near as scary or elaborate as the old Dunbar Haunted House (you may remember that from a few years back), but my little spook fest is great for the price (a couple hundred spent at the Dollarama and Walmart!)

And it’s FREE! So you can fight for parking at the Stanley Park train, or pay through the nose at PNE’s Fright Nights, or you can stop in at my place. I will be at it again Saturday, and maybe other days if it doesn’t rain.

If you come, park down at the Southlands Nursery and walk up the hill so we don’t bother the neighbours. Balaclava and SW Marine Drive. I’ll put up some signs if I can get my sh!t together tomorrow…