It's odd that old Jack o' Lantern has become such a cherished part of our Halloween revelry since it was an impulse-panic buy from a Walmart in a small town I don't think I've been back to since.
I was driving home from a meeting in another part of the state back in my days as a consultant for R.S. Byrnes when I realized it was 4 P.M. on Halloween, and I hadn't bought any treats or a pumpkin to carve.
I ducked off the Highway at the next retail center, ran in, and grabbed a couple of bags of candy and just about the only piece of spooky decor left in the store, the styrofoam Jack o' Lantern.
I didn't intend for it to become a holiday tradition, of course. I just wanted something quick I could put on my porch to let the neighborhood kids know I was dealing Snickers. But over the years, it has evolved from an easy bit of Halloween decorating to a not-so-subtle reminder of a time in my life when my priorities were very different, and something as trivial as neighborhood trick-or-treating was given little thought.
These days, I put out a lot more seasonal decor, scarecrows and real pumpkins, and the like. I am more present in the moment and that's a great place to be.