I get out of class at 3:40; by the time I pack up my scattered belongings and get outside, it's about four. Too early, really, to go get dinner, but late enough that I don't really want to hike up the five flights of stairs to my apartment and get comfortable, just to go back out again soon.
So, I usually take my time wandering across campus towards the food street. I often end up sitting on a bench in the park and reading for a while, enjoying the pleasant fall temperatures as long as I can. I'm not looking forward to the drizzle and chill of winter interrupting my routine.
Today was the most fun of all, though. Strolling along still in my witch costume, carrying a jack-o-lantern, nearly everyone I passes did a double-take. As I crossed the commons, I passed a group of grandmothers out taking their toddler grandchildren for a late afternoon walk; I stopped and re-lit my jack-o-lantern to show the children. They shyly peered into the glowing eyes, and looked askance at my funny hat. Who is this strange looking person who can't talk properly? Actually, I think the grandmothers were more excited. Who ever though of turning a pumpkin into a light? Takes playing with your food to a new level.
I hadn't really planned it, but I realized as I walked on towards the gate that I would be passing the kindergarten just as it let out for the day. Sure enough, as I walked along in front the school, I was quickly surrounded by a giggling group of curious children and probably even more curious parents. I showed them how the lid came off the top of the pumpkin, and the candle inside. One little girl was brave enough to try the word, and she pronounced "pumpkin" quite clearly. A few of the boys tried on my funny hat.
I went on to dinner at my favorite little restaurant, where the proprietor and her son exclaimed over my costume, too. I kept the jack-o-lantern lit as I finally headed home in the dark; I know I 'll be tired of it by the end of the week, but for today I had a great time causing double takes and surreptitious phone pictures.