Archive for Halloween Ball

October 30, 2010 – Day 5

Posted in Salem with tags , , , , , , , , on September 20, 2012 by Janet Glenn

Well, today is the day of the annual Halloween Ball here at the Hawthorne Hotel. It is a big deal here in Salem. As for my day, I’ve decided to go in search of gifts to take back to my family. Shopping in Salem is very fun. Too bad I not only have a money limit but I have to be mindful of how much I buy. Lord almighty, I can’t afford to take home another suitcase! I will never get over the fees that Continental Airlines charges for checked baggage. A fee for a fee for a fee ….. shit!

Salem Old Burying Point Cemetery

Anyway I bathe and dress and go out to see my beautiful Salem yet again. I still am worried about leaving. I have been crying off and on the whole time I’ve been here fretting about having to leave. What is it about this place? What the fuck is Salem to me? I can’t figure it out. The psychic lady who did my reading didn’t think I ever lived here before in a past life. What the hell does she know? What the fuck is it about Salem? It drives me crazy and it’s very real to me. When I’m in Salem, this whole “thing” comes over me. The feeling is so real especially when I’m in the Old Burying Point cemetery. That’s where it’s the strongest. I find it significant that the only major “spirit photo” I got was in the Old Burying Point cemetery last year. When I’m in the cemetery, I feel this incredible heaviness in my chest. I feel I’m being watched or that they (they?) want to tell me something. I feel this real heavy weight settle all around me. Salem Ancient TreeI feel more than compelled to touch the trees especially the largest ancient tree that you see here. And do I touch it? You bet your sweet bippy I do (what the fuck is a bippy?)! I think I've mentioned this before in this blog but dammit, I mean it! I went over to the Howard Street cemetery the other day and I felt no such thing. I loved the cemetery with the squirrels and jail and all but I just don't feel anything there. Of course, I can't get in the cemetery so that is a bit off putting but this all is very strange. I really wish I could know what's going on with me and Salem. How do I find out? Does anyone know?

Howard Street Cemetery

I head on out in search of gifts and I decide to eat at the Coven. Now doesn’t that name just piss some of you off? **Lots of Laughter** It’s not a place to go worship the devil as some of you think. The Coven is a very cool little coffee shop/cafe type place. I order coffee and “The Criminal.” “Excellent choice” the young guy says and yes, it was very good. It was an egg on a toasted crossiant. Whoa, what an idea! Not really. Fact is I like it very much and I love my surroundings even more. To me, everything in Salem is “an event.” Every little thing I do is special. Well for crap’s sake, here come the tears again. What an ass I am! Anyway, on this day, I shot some great video of dear Salem and I’ll try to show you if I can figure out how to convert the damn videos. Thanks JVC …. and this is a completely differant story (rant) for later!

Ok, I have a particular shop in mind for a couple of gifts but damn, there’s a line to get in! Dang tourists (tee hee)! I guess I will stand in line. Why not? It’s Saturday in Salem and it’s perfect! The shop is cool if a little uppity but a lot of shops (and people) are like that here. It’s okay with my cuz I’ve been accused of the same thing many times in my life. I’ve been told also that I write way different than I act in public. Whew, that’s a good thing! Can you imagine?! I’d be chasing people down trying to put them in my morgue and then I would write rude things about them! Hee! Anyway back, I go through the shop. It’s a spooky/witch shop. Lots of spooky/witch things but there’s some interesting stuff as well. I’ve been accused of being a witch many, many times in my life … even as a child. The mean kids in school called me “Morticia.” The “Addams Family” was popular when I was a kid. But, you know what? Looking around this shop, I don’t have a clue what to do with most of this stuff. I don’t even know what most of it is but some of it looks real interesting and other stuff looks real meaningful except I don’t really know the meaning. I buy a $2.50 Mood Ring and leave that place. At least I know what a Mood Ring does!

I go in other shops and see things that I really want to buy. This place here has a really cool selection of Ouija Boards both old and new. There’s one exactly like the one we played with in my childhood. There’s new, modern ones as well. I would really like to buy one but I have been SO warned against them that I’m afraid to. What if it makes the plane crash? This little toy board made by Parker Brothers … a toy company? Which brings me to an interesting fact right here in Salem. There’s some apartments here that are built on the land where Parker Brothers had their business and this is where they made what? The Ouija Board! Ok, that’s cool, right? Truth! Really!

Salem Bronze Witch

Alright, wandering down the Pedestrian Mall and there’s my favorite bronze witch statue. I think I would return to Salem year after year just to watch her work the crowd as a statue! Her costume is fabulous and I have learned that she designed and made it herself. The costume she had last year was different but they are both excellent. She really does look like a bronze statue …. an 8 foot tall bronze statue! She’s really good with the people and she makes her living totally from tips. She’s got this eccentric little witch sound she makes when you drop some money in her cauldron and I’ve seen people put money in there over and over and over just to get her to make that sound. Then she kisses at you and this is a very personal and sweet gesture and the people love it! She plays with people, of course, stealing their hats and giving them away to other people. She’ll stand very still like a statue and bop you on the head as you walk by. Sometimes she will be very still and someone will get up very close to her looking to see if she’s real and she will move ever so slightly and scare the crap out of them. Too funny! This girl is a part of Salem and she earns her money. Once she gets up on her step-ladder and gets settled, she will stand there 10 hours or more a day, not getting down … not even to pee. I don’t know how she does it. I pee about every hour. I’d be screwed! I salute her and she’s my friend on Facebook! Ain’t I something? (Right)

Hocus Pocus 1993

So looking around. I do finally find the gifts I want. Love buying things in Salem. I guess I should get back to my room. I’m planning to be late to the Ball tonight. Tonight on ABC Family on TV, they are having a back-to-back showing of the movie “Hocus Pocus.” A double feature! Oh rapture! As you know, “Hocus Pocus” was filmed right here in Salem and I’ve had such fun here walking around and finding the locations where they filmed. When I used to watch the movie years ago (and I watched it over and over but didn’t have a clue as to why), I never dreamed I’d actually be in Salem someday watching it. Goes to show, you just never know!

Janet's Witch Hat

Okay, watching “Hocus Pocus” and getting ready for the Ball that’s being held downstairs. I’m slathering on my witchy makeup. Does every damn thing have to be about a witch for cripes sake?! Yes indeedy! You are probably wondering, how does she go to a Halloween Ball all by herself? How indeed! I just get my shit in order and I frickin’ go! I do have my camera, of course. A camera is the ticket. It can be a companion and is for me. It’s my excuse for being there in the first place naturally. My excuse to “be.” Now, off to the Ball! Back in a bit!

Halloween Ball Costume

Okay, my gawd, I’m in my room after the Ball. I’ve had 2 drinks and I’m feeling very tipsy. I never drink, 2 drinks and I’m such a wimp! Well, my beautiful hat and cape did the trick. I was a hit with a couple of guys. One was the guy 2 rooms down. He was haunting me meaning everytime I looked up, he was standing close to me. It became a game to me sort of. I would move on purpose to see if he would show up in my vicinity yet again and damn he appeared everytime! It did my heart good to be getting the attention from a man again. Then I wandered into the main ballroom and I fell absolutely in love. There was this guy in there. We were so drawn to each other! He was young, in his thirties, and he was with a date. We first encountered each other while we were trying to make our way through the crowd. For one brief moment, the people stopped and he and I were left looking at each other face-to-face and holy Jesus … an enchanted moment! Then the crowd moved on. We came together again one more time and it was downright, in your face attraction. It could have been love for us. I know it! But alas, I moved on and went to my room, a bit tipsy and thinking how happy I was to have had that experience with both of those guys. I knew I was too old for the young one but how sweet it was to think of it …. and him! The other guy? I heard him and his wife screaming at each other when they came back from the ball. I hope I didn’t cause that!

Tomorrow is Halloween!

Janet

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November 1, 2009 – Day 6

Posted in Salem with tags , , , , , , , on August 19, 2012 by Janet Glenn

Okay, I awake and it’s still the same day! I’m the fuck getting out of this hotel and going back to Salem for my final night! I pack, check out, grab a doughnut and coffee, arrange my ride to Salem and step outside to wait. It’s fucking freezing!! Sorry about the fucking “F” word so much. I’m just still fucking pissed. Now see? What I said about Salem weather? If you feel a cold breeze and especially a cold breeze accompanied by rain, you’re in for some cold-ass weather! Oh, and it’s cold but I’m on my way to Salem!

Salem Harbour

And now for the next leg of my trip. I arrive at my new hotel, Salem Waterfront Hotel, and I check in but I can’t get in my room until 3:00 p.m. I’m okay with that. I’m in Salem and I can explore! And low and behold, this hotel sits right on beautiful Salem Harbor. Now how did I manage to do that? I’m so excited so I set off with my camera in tow. I get quite far from the hotel. The Harbor and the day is so lovely, it’s beyond words. It’s cold and in the afternoons here it’s darker in the sunlight and I’m loving it …. walking, walking. And then I feel this rumble and low-grade pain in the lower part of my belly. Oh dear, you know? The food at the Halloween Ball last night somehow didn’t taste right. I suddenly remember this right here, right now. Next thought? You know, I’m here in beautiful Salem taking in the lovely sights of the Harbor and I’m about to shit my pants. Right here in Salem. Now who’d ever thought that? I’m in trouble. I’m a long way from the hotel, I’m not even in my room yet and I HATE to shit in restaurants! So I walk. Walk, walk, walking. Don’t I look normal? Just walking along, enjoying the sights, holding my ass as tightly closed as possible. My, my this is turning into a long walk. Walking, humming, oh dear. How much longer must I go and I sure hope I can find the public restroom in the hotel fast. I hope I don’t have to wait in line. I hope I don’t crap my pants. All these thoughts going through my head. Walking, isn’t Salem beautiful? The pain is getting worse, more insistent. Oh God, I hope I make it! Now I’m praying. The hotel finally. I race to the restroom after I ask where it is, good no line. I enter, tear at my clothes, sit, nothing. Nothing! I mean, for a long time nothing! People come and go, various sounds and smells and there I sit. Nothing. Was it just cramps with no issue? Good! I was so worried and ashamed. Didn’t have to be! But these cramps hurt and I don’t know what to expect. So I wait and just as I’m about to give up, it happens. It’s really fast and it’s over, just like that. Pain, everything gone. Never did come back. I thought I would be sick for the rest of the day. I feel that I’m being toyed with but I got some beautiful photos! ***Mental note: Do not eat at Ball next year.***

I at this point have an appetite. I know, weird. Typical Texan. So I get into my room and then go in search of food. First things first, ice cream! And it tastes rotten and old. Oh my gawd, what’s with this place? I throw away the ice cream and literally run away from it! Oh my gawd! But I’m really hungry and very bewildered at this point. So I walk and walk (again). It’s Sunday night in Salem, the day after Halloween, and everything is closing or is already closed. Hmmmmm, looking around. Keep walking. It’s cold. I’m hungry. I’m alone. Walking. I did A LOT of walking in Salem! And finally, there it is. Brothers Diner! It looks all cozy inside, warm with its fogged up windows. I’m going in. It smells so good! It’s a cafeteria-like place and these guys are treating me like I’m really, really welcome. I belly up to the food bar and create my dinner. Thank you, thank you. It’s so good. Thank you for feeding me. Thank you for being here. While I’m eating, I’m really soaking up the culture of this place. The way everyone talks with their accents and all, I’d swear I’m sitting in some little diner in the Bronx or something. It sounds and feels so New York. I’ve never been to New York but I’m sure this is exactly how it would be. Some character-looking dude makes a grand entrance in the door and throws his arms out wide and announces, “I’m back!” Just like in the movies made in New York. It’s uncanny. I’m getting a very weird feeling come over me like I’m in the Twilight Zone or something and I’m suddenly not in Salem anymore. Oh dear, that’s really scary. Must shake that feeling off! I have found that when you travel alone, you just have too much time to think and my brain’s been having one hell of a good time with me on this trip!

So, I finish eating and I get the HELL back to my hotel room! I go to bed at 9:30 p.m. I’m exhausted and tomorrow is another day here in Salem, Mass! Say goodnight, Janet!

I’ve included a few photos below of my walk through Salem on this day. Hope you like these as much as I did taking them!

My 2nd Place Winner

This is the original of my 2nd place winner in the Salem Photo Contest (at the top of this page).

House of the Seven Gables

House of the Seven Gables on Salem Harbor

Morning Glory Bed and Breakfast

Morning Glory Bed and Breakfast on Salem Harbor

Spooky Store Fronts

Spooky Store Fronts on Salem Harbor

Witch's Brew Cafe

Witch’s Brew Cafe

Halloween 2009 – Part 2

Posted in Salem with tags , , , , , , , on August 18, 2012 by Janet Glenn

Okay, 2:00 a.m. – morning after Halloween – back home. Well, back at my hotel in Beverly at least. What a horrifying experience getting here! I never felt such relief to step into a hotel as I did tonight. If I come back to Salem (and I will), I will never stay outside of Salem again! Clearly, the shuttle service that took us to Salem earlier did not know what they were doing! After I attended the Halloween Ball festivities, I set out to meet up with the shuttle at the Salem Witch Museum at midnite – our pre-arranged time and spot. Salem Witch MuseumWhen I arrived, I called as instructed and said I was ready to be picked up. The guy on the other end was frantic, spouting out instructions and directions to me – someone who didn’t have a clue where in the hell she was – on foot, lost and from Texas for crap’s sake! I gathered that I was supposed to meet the Van at a specific intersection somewhere in Salem. Hmmmm. I began walking and found a policeman directing traffic. I said, “See, look, I’m from Texas and I’m pissed and lost and I need to get to such and such intersection.” The policeman was nice and helpfully – eagerly even – pointed the way …. down a dark, spooky street to my left. Finding my wayAt least I walked the right direction! I look down the street and it’s all houses – old houses – on both sides with some having people lurking around the porches. I’m not scared of ghosts but I am scared of people so I am not liking the idea of walking down there for a couple of blocks. Anyway, here I go, a very perturbed, somewhat overweight witch still dressed up in all her witchy best about to walk down a street that at this moment looks like it’s probably the scariest street in Salem. Oh, I’m so far from home – a totally solitary witch at this point. So I walk …. down the very middle of the street. What a sight I must have been! I’m peering at the houses as I go making sure no ghosts or zombies come running out. I am in Salem after all and Halloween has just ended. So I walk and I finally reach the intersection. There are no street signs. Now I’m not going to go into this here but why oh why are there never street signs when your life absolutely depends on it?! I do see two groups of people standing on either side of the street. I assume these are my people and choose the group that has the nicest looking lady standing there. So we wait, and wait under this huge tree. The lady and I speak. She has about as much information as I do but at least she’s a human presence for me. We wait and then it begins to rain. Salem has great weather. It happens when you least expect it. And there goes a cold wind. I have been in Salem long enough to know that you don’t take cold breezes lightly. So me and my beautiful hat are getting soaked and it will only be a matter of time before we are freezing as well. And I have no where to go, no way to get there. I see in front of me two guys from my hotel jumping into a cab and driving away. They could have offered to share that cab …. and fare …. with some of us. I would have. I’m from Texas. We wait, we get wet, we get nervous. And then alas, two Vans show up! We are elated and run and lurch to said heaven-sent Vans …. and neither are going to our hotel. The hell you say! Our group that had gathered were in no mood to hear this and quite literally jacked up both drivers and piled our asses into the Vans whether they liked it or not. “Now ***pointing gun at driver’s head*** if you know what’s good for you, you’ll get your skinny ass moving to Beverly!” And he did! We were packed in like sardines, soaking wet and stinking but we managed a civilized conversation during our ride.

We made it! Shit, we frickin’ made it. I get out of that fucking Van (never again), walk straight to my room, very gingerly hang up my hat to dry and fall face down on the bed. See youse in the morning.

Janet

Halloween 2009 – Part 1

Posted in Salem with tags , , , , , on July 4, 2012 by Janet Glenn

Salem Spook 2009

 

Halloween Sunset in Salem

Okay, about my Halloween in Salem. It was way more than I could have ever dreamed it would be! Firstly, the atmosphere was, well, Halloween! It was super windy with the smell and feel of Autumn and just a hint of a storm on the way. It reminded me of so many of my Halloweens in years past. Do you feel it? Aww, nostalgia …. moving on…. I didn’t know that Salem would fill up with over 100,000 people strolling along the streets in costumes. Picture for yourself at Mardi Gras in New Orleans but without the alcohol-fueled bad behavior. Halloween in Salem is a peaceful, happy event. Everyone talks to each other and poses for pictures. It is illegal to drink alcohol in public in Salem and everyone knows it and lives by it. It was so refreshing to see so many people gathered in one spot that were happy and loving the holiday festivities. I felt safe in Salem on Halloween. That’s more than I can say about Houston! Oh, and look at the lovely Halloween sunset in Salem behind a street performer. I wish my camera could have captured it “live” but this will do nicely I think!

About my costume! I was a witch and I bought the most beautiful purple felt witch hat. It is adorned with chiffon and autumn foliage. There is a picture of it in the blog here and you’ve probably already seen it if you are reading this. I included a gothic blouse, black skirt, striped stockings and some witchy shoes. I found it humourous that the only thing I had to buy was the hat. I can always throw a costume together with the clothes that I own. Everything I have is gothic, black, striped and pointy! I was flattered by a couple of people wanting to take pictures of me and with me. It really is a classy hat!

Salem Halloween Costumes

About the costumes in Salem! I can honestly say that as of now, there’s nothing I haven’t seen in costume wear! There were thousands and thousands of costumes and I think I tried to take a picture of every single one of them. There were so many people walking by that all I could do was point my camera into the crowd and hope to get something good. This method did not disappoint me! I got some excellent crowd and costume pictures! I’ve included a few here. I will have all my Salem photos pulled together for everyone to see.

Besides walking and experiencing Salem on Halloween, I attended a Halloween Ball at the Hawthorne Hotel. As you know from my prior posts, the Hawthorne is an historic and hopefully haunted hotel. On the night of the Ball, the hotel was transformed into the biggest haunted house you could ever wish for. Their theme this Halloween was taken from VH1’s Rock of Love so it was Rock of Horror. Pretty clever. I was a bit surprised by the security measures they took but I guess they have to these days. As I entered the door, I suddenly felt hands going all over my body. Whoa, WTF? They were even squeezing the bag that I was carrying. Probably feeling for weapons. I spoke with one guest who was dressed as “Edward Scissorhands” and let me tell you, he looked just like him. “Edward” was complaining because security made him “check” most of his costume at the door. Apparently he had what looked like scissors for hands (duh) and security did not like that one bit. So there he was only half of “Edward Scissorhands” and he was making his displeasure known. Hawthorne Hotel Halloween BallI felt bad for him because he really put a lot of effort into his costume. I knew exactly who he was even without the scissor hands. That made him happy that at least people knew who he was trying to portray. As I’m sure you are wondering why, the people in Salem take their Halloween costumes very seriously and besides that the Ball was really expensive! The band was excellent and they rocked the night away. And one more thing about the Ball, I don’t know how many of you have attended a Halloween Ball completely alone but it is really not a good experience. When I took a moment to look around at all the people, I felt a bit fearful at being among all these strangers. I didn’t know a soul and each face somehow looked scary to me. Oh well, it was Halloween after all and everyone gets a scare, right? Right!

Salem Halloween Costumes

Let’s see, what are some of the costumes that I saw? I saw a man dressed as a stove, I saw the Octo Mom and all her babies, I saw a nurse escorting her patient along, her patient being in a straitjacket. I saw Bret Michaels, Daisy and Hulk Hogan. I saw Thing 1 and Thing 2 (don’t ask). I saw two headless horsemen, witches in drag, one only wearing a leotard, high heels and a witch hat (leaving a little more than I cared to see visible). A very handsome Fire Chief. Oh wait, he wasn’t in costume! I saw lot’s of guys and girls dressed in Victorian flair. I even saw Mozart! Scarlet and Rhett Butler were in attendance and the famous witches from Hocus Pocus, the Sanderson Sisters were happily in Salem once again. I saw lots of ghosts, ghouls and zombies, a few brides, birds and kitty cats. I could go on and on. Some people went really gory and some went with sexy and glamourous. There were many vampires and some of them looked a little too real for my taste! I found that in Salem, if someone wants to be a vampire, they just don’t cram plastic vampire teeth in their mouth, they actually have vampire teeth installed and these are very real. They also wear vampire clothing and it’s not a costume. This is their everyday wear. It’s a little unsettling to see but at the same time, it looks really elegant and “in style” like they are trendsetters. It was lovely!

Salem Police

The only real downside of Halloween was leaving to go back to my hotel which I will go into in the next chapter. The other noticeable downer was that when Halloween is over, it is frickin’ over! The Salem Police come out in full force, dressed in riot gear and march right smack down the middle of the streets ordering people to go the hell home! Some of the lucky cops get to ride the most beautiful horses I’ve ever seen. They are HUGE! And when the fireworks are over, it’s fucking OVER! I guess you can’t blame them; after all they’ve had “Haunted Happenings” for a full 31 days and I can just imagine what nonsense they’ve had to deal with. But let’s not mention the millions of dollars they’ve raked in from all those visitors!

So with all that being said, let’s move on to my Halloween disaster. Huh? Oh, and I hope you enjoy the Halloween photos I’ve included below.

Hope you had a happy Halloween!
Janet

Salem 2009

Salem 2009

Salem 2009

Salem 2009

Salem 2009

Salem 2009

Salem 2009

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October 30, 2009 – Day 4

Posted in Salem with tags , , , , , , , , , , on June 10, 2012 by Janet Glenn

Well alrighty then, it’s the day before Halloween! Actually as I write this post, it is Halloween morning. I have a very busy day planned for Halloween but first things first. Let me tell you about my day today.

When I awoke this morning, I knew I had to check out and find another place to stay. Here I am over 1,600 miles from home, all by myself and almost homeless. Well that’s how it felt! I had a few anxious moments there but I just went and took care of my business. I got another hotel room at the Wylie Inn in Beverly, MA which is only about 2 miles from Salem. The hotel has a schuttle that runs back and forth from Salem. $15.00 per ride – 2 miles. Can you imagine the prices around here?! Everybody has it figured out how to make money!

Beverly Window View

Anyway, this place is new and it sits on a college campus so it’s very scenic. There’s a photo of my view out of the windows. Is that a ghostly mist in the photo perhaps? It’s really strange but this room feels really creepy to me and it’s a modern building. I don’t know if it’s the smell or what. It smells new, like new carpet and it’s immaculate. Boy, that’s enough to make me feel strange right there! It does sit on the edge of what looks to be like some very dense woods. Maybe that’s it. I don’t know, I just feel spooked here. The Hawthorne Hotel was very old and historic and I didn’t feel spooked there at all. You wouldn’t think a brand new place would make me feel like this. For some reason I begin to hum the theme from Poltergeist…… hmmmmmm

Salem Witch House

Okay, I’ll shake that feeling off if possible. My day before I got my new room allowed me some time to explore some more of Salem. I went to the Witch House and got some better pictures. I’ve included one here. This house is the only one in Salem that has absolute ties to the Salem Witch Trials. The judge lived there and well, we all know what they did to those poor women and men. 19 were hung and one was crushed to death. There were an additional 150 people in prison awaiting trial. All accused of being witches. None were witches, well, of course not! This is a very interesting story and we will be presenting this on Halloween’s Unseen at some point.

Salem Witch Hat

I also bought my hat! Oh, you must see it. There it is in the photo. I’m going to the Halloween Ball on Saturday night at the Hawthorne and the hat is part of my costume. I love it! I was so happy to find it! At least I’ll be able to wear something pretty to the party!

Salem Police Witch Logo

So, dear dark ones, I will sign off for today. I hope you like the photos that I’ve included! Here’s a photo of a Salem police car with their witch logo on the door. Oh, how appropriate!

Oh, and I musn’t forget, I ran across a vampire in my travels and he was so kind to pose for me. I know that New Orleans, Louisiana has vampires but it seems that Salem, Mass does as well! What a friendly guy! (shiver)

Happy Halloween!
Janet

Salem Tour Vampire

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