For many weeks, I wondered what the Mimico Pumpkin parade was all about.
I entertained thoughts of some Wickerman ritual taking place but in the end, it was an innocent activity designed to help residents compost their pumpkins.
It turned out to be a Samhain-type celebration but instead of livestock being slaughtered, it was the pumpkins. Killing two birds with one stone, as it were, the pumpkins came equipped with their own fire. Another year of good luck is certainly in store for Mimico judging by the number of residents who took part in the ghoulish sacrifice. Some of the humans came in costumes to confuse the pumpkins spirits. No one wants an angry jack-o-lantern stalking him in his nightmares.
The pumpkins gathered over the evening, flicking as the sun set over the lake, bravely waiting to face the compost trucks in a few short hours.
I took a walk around the parade at about six-thirty and then returned around seven-thirty.
There were some beautifully carved pumpkins. This was a very successful event.
For some of the pumpkin pictures, I used a flash. For others, I let the light of the pumpkins be the flash.
When I returned to the park at seven-thirty, I saw several groups of parents walking away from the park quickly, holding pumpkins while children wailed behind them that they didn't want their pumpkins to die.
By eight o'clock, there were hundreds, if not, thousands of pumpkins winding across the bandstand and through the playground behind the hedges. As I was leaving, even more people were arriving with more pumpkins in wagons, strollers, and cradled in their arms.
This pumpkin pleaded with me as I left the park to not leave him there, with the others, to face their fate of behind squashed in a compost truck.
I didn't stay to see when the truck came or how the pumpkins met their face. Their beautiful faces flickered in my mind and I didn't want to contemplate their demise.
When I returned the next day, there wasn't a single seed left to show where the pumpkins had paraded.
Many of the pumpkins didn't want their pictures taken. My camera malfunctioned countless times. It may have been all the flickering candles confusing the camera equipment.
Some of the pictures are interesting.
This looks like all the pumpkins turned into tiny shrouded ghosts, marching in lines.
I tried to take a picture of this dog in a costume but the pumpkins' souls photobombed the shot. The camera refused to focus.
There was a wagon full of pumpkins. It wasn't moving. I have no idea why this picture didn't come out fabulous. I think the pumpkins were already ghosts long before the compost truck came.
Are spirits streaming from the jack-o-lanterns on this Samhain night?