Crisped whispers from the leaves above remind me that it's a SoCal fall. Gone before you know it. Some of the leaves hold on to genetic memories and defiantly turn red, but most of them have given up, yellowed and rustled a goodbye to their mates as they float down.
Attendees are instructed to adhere to an enforced costume policy and show up dressed as harem girls, nomads, serpent charmers, sword swallowers, pharaohs, mummies, traders, treasure hunters, archaeologists and the bizarre of the bazaar.
Intrigued by the quirk factor, by the mystical quality of the place, I decided to go with a friend to a séance that was part of the festival, and before I go any further, I probably should say this: I didn't go with high hopes. I didn't really think a medium could communicate with the spirit world.
All Saints' Day also marks the first day of Transgender Awareness Month, with its own equivalent annual vigil, the International Transgender Day of Remembrance to commemorate those slain in anti-transgender hate crimes.
Halloween no longer retains the sense of awe and wonder associated with Hallows Eve and Samhain in the past, yet it remains an intriguing, still-evolving ritual that fuses a wealth of folk beliefs and cultural traditions.