Ever wonder what a cowboy dress up as for Halloween? For decades here on the ranch we have never had one trick-or-treater. When our kids were really little we bought candy in case some kids could convinced their parents to drive 10 miles out of town for a few candy bars. None did. So they never got to see how the cowboys dressed up.
As our kids grew older they wanted to trick or treat, so we drove them to town and walked with them around some residential neighborhoods. Soon they progressed to the age when they wanted to walk by themselves, or with friends. So we took them to Grandpa and Grandma's neighborhood and let them walk around while we waited at the Grandparent's.
Then they progressed to not wanting to do the walking. Preferring to wait in town at Grandpa and Grandma's house too, and give out candy to the littler trick or treaters. Then one Fall college season started and no more trick or treating.
But not wanting to give up on an excuse to have huge amounts of chocolate around the house I still buy candy. Just incase a child ends up 10 miles south of town, down a quarter mile dirt drive, looking for strangers to give them candy. Halloween, anything can happen.
In the 1960's when my husband and his 4 siblings were tots their mom would drive them into town too and let them roam the sparse residential areas. Then the whole population of Douglas county was about 4000-5000 individuals, including Minden, Gardnerville, Genoa, Dresslerville, some ranching families and anyone brave enough to stay up at Lake Tahoe. Tahoe in the 60's was not too developed. The Lake sort of closed up on itself in fall, hibernated during winter, only started to get its kinks out in spring getting ready for its busy posh summers.
Minden and Gardnerville were so quiet and spread out then that my husband's mother loaded up her five children dressed as cowboys and indians, princess and pirates, took them to town and drove between houses so no one got lost collecting bags of candy.
One Halloween these children energized by the excitement of the night and the candy they continually consumed needed to use a restroom at a local diner. The five rambunctious siblings piled loudly out and expansively back into their mom's station wagon. After a block or two the kids in back noticed a small ghoul running down the road, arms waving, and screaming.
Seems in all the commotion of getting in and out of the car, one of the smallest in the family was left behind at the diner and was running as fast as she could to catch the family station wagon as it drove away. Tears and hugs were exchanged when the car stopped and the ghoulish little girl climbed into the car full of laughter and love.
Turning the calender to October this election year one wonders what is scarier. A man who admittedly does not care for 47 percent of America's population. Or the guy who admits he likes the word Obama-care, because he does care. This same guy who gets criticized because he encourages government spending, knowing that what you spend is my income and what I spend is your income and if private business is not spending government needs to, to keep money moving and jobs. This other guy is the Bain of Americas's existence, a person who harvests a business for its cash, destroys jobs, which devastates a community, and pushes jobs overseas.
Just something to think about while eating American made chocolate bars. And the cowboy said he dresses up as "A cowboy," for Halloween.
Marie Johnson is a Carson Valley rancher.