The first year I did absolutely nothing for Halloween
Halloween has always been a pretty important holiday for me. As a kid the reasons were obvious because of all the free candy and dressing up like superheroes or monsters. When I was a teenager I think I extended this tradition a bit further than I probably should and ended up getting some nasty looks from the adults at the doors as they said "aren't you a bit old for this? " with their eyes and reluctantly handed over some candy.
Then I ended up going to college by accident at a University that had a tradition of going completely wild for the Holiday. At least while I was in attendance there it was considered that largest Halloween party in the world.
Tens of thousands of people would descend on downtown Greenville for a party that made Mardi Gras look like child's play in order to show off their costumes and spend time in various bars. Now this all seems like madness to me because I can't believe I paid money in order to be that crowded everywhere that I went. One of the years that I was there multiple people were randomly stabbed in the crowd by an unknown assailant and from that point forward the city decided that the celebration was going to be banned. Upon banning it, word quickly traveled that the whole thing was going to be moved to some large apartment complex, unofficially.
While I was no longer a student there at this point the riot police turned up and dispersed everyone and in response the revelers destroyed everything - which is shitty but if the police had simply left them alone, this probably wouldn't have happened. They of course blamed it on the students and a bunch of arrests were made. I really think there were infinite ways that this could have been handled better and if the police had simply made an announcement and provided a safe way for everyone to get home that all of this could have been avoided.
Even though I had a traveling job that would land me in different cities every year after I began my professional life, I would find some sort of Halloween party wherever I was and do my best to participate. It was just fun dressing up.
Later in Thailand, I worked at a school and we tried to get the kids involved in a holiday that isn't really celebrated there. You can't really tell from the look on their faces but they liked it a lot. Free candy has a tendency to have this affect on kids. I didn't work this job for very long because as it turns out I don't really like teaching very much :)
The parties at the local bar that night would be epic every year and a lot of of teachers asked weeks ahead of time to get the following day off work if the date didn't fall on a weekend.
Us locals really looked forward to this day and people would spend quite a bit of time getting their costumes together which wasn't terribly easy considering that there aren't any Halloween stores in Thailand since the holiday isn't widely celebrated. My costumes throughout the years were Keith Flint (which included shaving my head own the middle and permanently dying my hair green,) Wolverine which necessitated me making some fake claws that actually turned out pretty good despite the fact that they were homemade with cardboard and silver spray paint
one year I went as Joker and this included me having a custom made green and purple suit as well as a ton of face paint. I also once again permanently dyed my hair green. We went all out for these things.
Once Thailand stopped "playing nice" with visas we suddenly saw a great deal of our population leaving the country permanently and these parties got smaller and smaller. We still did them though but attendance was way down.
Last year, when the rest of the world was locked down, Vietnam still wasn't for some sort of magical reason and while the celebration was considerably smaller than it was all the years I was in Thailand, some dedicated locals made it fun and some events were going on. Most of us didn't have costumes though.
This year, I did absolutely nothing. In fact, I didn't even realize it was Halloween until I had already gone home for the day and at that point I wasn't going to go back out. When you have a job like I do, you tend to forget what day of the week it is because the days are kind of unimportant.
I don't even know if anything was going on as far as costumes are concerned: I presume there was but I had decided to day drink yesterday since I was so hungover from the previous day's festivities. I don't know if you have ever been to that point, but sometimes hangovers are so intense that the only cure is more drinks and a ton of takeaway food to have on the sofa at home while drinking a bunch of water.
So I was a lamer yesterday for the first time in my life on Halloween and didn't even seek out celebrating it. It's a little sad to me because I have broken my more than 40 year streak :( . Hopefully you did something a bit more exciting and if so, I'd like to hear about it!