In early September, I asked Don if Halloween is celebrated in Japan.
He assured me it is not. So I packed up my travel witch hat (yes, I have an easy-to-pack Halloween outfit for when I am out of town on Halloween) along with the rest of my belongings and tucked it into storage for the fall quarter.
And then we arrived in Japan September 20th.
And Halloween was everywhere.
Every store has Halloween displays, and every restaurant, from the fancy to the fast-food, has been decked out in Halloween decorations. All weekend we’ve seen people walking around in costumes, from very young children to fully grown adults. Halloween is everywhere.
And from our very first day, when we arrived in the middle of a typhoon and spent our first day dodging jet lag by staying out of the apartment, spending hours in department stores, sheltered from the winds and downpours, we encountered this song.
This song was playing in Loft, a several story department store in our town. Since then, we have discovered it is playing in every Loft, it seems. And it doesn’t just play demurely in the Halloween section. It plays in every single Halloween aisle, just for you. When you walk into one aisle of Halloween goods, a speaker starts to play the song. When you walk into the next aisle, another speaker starts to play. And all of a sudden, there are about 10 different speakers playing the song, all starting from slightly different points.
It’s like a horrible, haunted cacophonous song-round (I don’t know if singing songs in “rounds” -where different groups start the same song at different times, so everyone is singing different parts at the same time – really happens, or it was just something Mrs. Russamano, our elementary school music teacher, made us do. But I hated them.)
And I have not been able to get it out of my head since our very first day in Japan.
And I want to share this with you!
Here are two versions, a short version (about 30 secs) and the even-creepier full version (1 min., 17 secs). Sorry I forgot to turn the video around until halfway through the short version, but I promise it does right itself.
This song will infect your brain like a zombie attack.
And while we’re at it, Happy Samhain, Happy Witches’ New Year, Happy Dios de los Muertos, Happy All Saint’s Day & All Soul’s Day…and any other coming holiday I may have missed!
May you enjoy the time when the veil between the worlds is thought by so many religions and cultures to be thin, may you reflect happily on the lives of lost loved ones, and may you enjoy a good excuse to break taboos and step outside of yourself for a bit these next few days.