In the UK around this time, small boys' thoughts turn to explosives. Guy Fawkes Night, or Bonfire Night, on November 5th, is a ritual of burning in effigy Guido Fawkes, the leader of a terrorist gang who were foiled in their attempt to blow up the Houses of Parliament in 1604. Fires are lit, potatoes roasted, and fireworks let off with abandon. Preceding this, boys sit by their effigies and ask for 'penny for the guy', to get the funds to buy the fireworks in the first place.
Or do they still? The American Halloween, or autumn confectionery begging festival, was making inroads when we left the UK 5 years ago.
Here, we carve pumpkins, we dress up for Jerry's annual Halloween party, and tonight we'll dress up again and walk the leafy lanes of Willow Glen with the boys collecting sweets and chocolate from strangers dressed as monsters, then hide it from them the next day so they don't spend the day riding blood sugar rushes and crashes.
It was a lot of fun walking the neighbourhood - top tips:
Go out between 6 and 8pm;
The rule is, if the porch light is on, they have sweets ready and welcome visitors, otherwise, move on;
Kerb crawling in an SUV alongside your children running up and down the driveways is gauche.