In a normal year, I greatly look forward to celebrating Halloweekend because it means I get to dress up in silly costumes, eat a lot of candy, and enjoy meeting up with friends to see how they’re celebrating. Halloween always provides a fun weekend for the semester because it comes right around midterms season—the exact time when a weekend of fun with friends is very much needed. Naturally, when Halloween rolled around this year, my friends and I didn’t know what to expect… could it still be a fun weekend despite the fact we couldn’t see each other like before?
That question was first answered for me on Friday morning (October 30th) when I woke up to snow falling right outside my dorm window. Some part of me saw the irony of Halloweekend looking more like wintertime (and causing me to hear Christmas songs echoing in my head because of that). But, the view outside of my window was so beautiful; the campus had been transformed into a shining, bright display of snow overnight.
In that first moment looking out the window, I forgot about the schoolwork I had to do, about my concerns about Halloween, about everything that I had been carrying around this semester. All I saw and felt was pure joy. I took every excuse that day to go on walks while the snowflakes fell around me, and even tried to go sledding down Pres Lawn at one point. I walked all around campus, not even noticing all the snow accumulating on my hat and clothes, just so focused on taking in the sheer beauty of the Tufts campus decorated with snow. I had been so caught up in classes and dealing with general life during a pandemic that I had forgotten to stop and enjoy the simple moments of college life. I pranced around in the snow like a little kid, called up some friends to join me, and remembered just how lucky I am to be able to attend college in person right now... not only that, but how lucky I am for that college to be Tufts, a place that has my favorite people and that means so much to me.
As for Halloween celebrations, I was still able to dress up in 3 different costumes, even though I knew that only my suitemates would see me. My roommate and I dressed up as a couple from a show (David and Patrick from Schitt’s Creek, if anyone has heard of it), and then I changed into a witch costume, so excited for the moment I could break out my toy wand. Lastly, my suitemates and I dressed up as each other; we had each pulled someone’s name out of a hat, and followed their fashion choices to inform our costumes. After that, we all guessed who was dressed as which other person from the suite. We also baked cookies, played some word games, and ate candy—much like we would’ve done for a typical Halloween. I definitely missed not being able to go from dorm to dorm to say hi to other friends, but I loved that we were able to preserve the spirit of fun and excitement that I look forward to each Halloween.
So, was Halloweekend anywhere near “normal”? Nope. It snowed for practically the entire day on Friday, and showing off costumes on Friday and Saturday was limited to walking around my suite. But, honestly, it was a wonderful weekend. The snowy day was exactly the change of pace and scenery I needed at this point in the semester. The adapted Halloween celebrations reminded me that we’re all in this together, finding ways to stay joyful and connected. Despite this weekend being unusual, it was exactly the fun and exciting break I needed it to be.