Whilst I was doling out the Halloween sweets this year ably assisted by my sidekick super cat “One speed Hobo” who usually stations himself by the carved pumpkin on Halloween as only good black cats can; I was struck by the difference in behaviour between Turkish and most English children; particularly, when a group of unruly fourteen year old youths, banged on the door demanding treats. Turkish children are taught from a very early age to respect adults and would be heartily discouraged from bad behaviour.The youths had made no attempt at fancy dress; just hoodies and scarves which covered the lower half of their faces giving them the appearance of gangsters. I can only imagine how intimidating this would have been for an elderly person living alone and fully understand how many of them dread Halloween, even to the point of switching off all their lights and bolting their doors.
Whilst the youths stood at our door commanding sweets, pulling on poor old Hobo’s tail amid a tirade of obscenities, I felt disinclined to extend any hospitality at all and was less than impressed when they threatened the smaller children who had also come calling. Had this been in different circumstances I would have probably resorted to a can of pepper spray and a Taser gun set to stun.However, I was startled by a low growling which appeared to be coming from Hobo! Yes, Hobo the Barry White of the cat world, infamous for being a lover not a fighter. The acne pimply faced youth pulling on his tail immediately released it and jumped backwards, yelling all sorts of expletives. “He’s vicious, should be put down” he yelled at me whilst he and his friends sped up the drive. Apparently, size does matter and Hobo, well he is the size of a small Shetland pony!
During this heated exchange, Hobo already unconcerned with the proceedings was wrapping himself around the legs of some of the younger children whilst they squealed with laughter. After handing out the last of the sweets, the smallest of the children dressed as a delicate fairy beckoned me and as I bent down she whispered in my ear “he’s magic you know” gesturing to Hobo.
I looked at her small earnest face and I winked at her conspiratorially, whilst putting my finger to my lips and said “I rather think he is but let’s keep it just between us”.