See the little countdown clock I just added to the right?
Over there ------->>>>
It's 60 days today exactly, until Halloween.
That's only 1440 hours to get in as much Halloween as possible before it goes away again for another year. Marfi's Haunted Humpday definitely started to get me into the spirit and that's not all she did. She also got me thinking about how I developed one of my big obsessions.
Stay with me here and I'll explain.
Stay with me here and I'll explain.
One of my fondest memories from my first visit to Disneyland was seeing the Haunted Mansion and New Orleans Square. I might have been around 12 so I was old enough to really have those memories stick.
Of course I was just your average California kid and I had no idea there was a real 'New Orleans Square' that existed somewhere out there. We really didn't travel much outside of California and my parents had no interest in southern culture. I just remember walking around the square, taking in the pretty buildings and shops, thinking, forget Sleeping Beauty's castle, this is where I'd rather be. I even remember what I was wearing that day.
I remember asking my parents for a couple of dollars to buy a souvenir from one of those pretty shops. I don't remember what things I looked at exactly but I ended up buying a pretty little bottle of rose water perfume. I was so excited to be able to conjure up the memory of this place anytime, just by opening my own bottle of magic.
To this day the scent of rose water reminds me of that first trip.
Anytime I could visit Disneyland or Disneyworld the Haunted Mansion was the first place I would always go. I would pretty much stay in New Orleans Square all day if I could.
Fast forward many, many, many years later and I discover there's a real 'New Orleans Square'. An entire city in fact with real architecture, an amazing history, a diverse culture that doesn't seem to exist anywhere else and food and art that would require one to exist on a minimum amount of sleep to be able to take it all in. Oh and the parades. How can you not love people that need no excuse to have a parade....with those pretty parasols and that infectious music.
Above all else I was inspired by this city's resilience. Through Katrina's devastation and other disasters that followed after. New Orleans seemed to draw a certain type of spirit. Artists, gypsies, saints and sinners. I know somewhere in my soul I keep hearing that same call.
I've been hooked on Nola far longer than I realized and it's all just starting to make sense to me now. I always thought it was the aftermath of hurricane Katrina that peaked my interest but I think it really goes back to that first Disney trip to the Haunted Mansion and New Orleans Square. It sounds silly I know and I have yet to make my first visit there. I do know the real thing is nothing like the Disney version and that's what I can't wait to see.
So what does all this have to do with Halloween you ask?
I've been trying to do a New Orleans themed Halloween for years and I've managed to add a little of that flavor to my regular spooky décor. But this year Marfi inspired me to really embrace the haunted bayou voodoo theme and we've been brainstorming about how to bring that experience to our own non bayou corners of the country. We'll keep you posted and in the meantime you might want to start looking for your old book of voodoo spells or that gris gris bag you tucked away in the bottom drawer of your grandmother's old wardrobe.
The spirit of Marie Laveau calls.
Better be ready.