PEARTREE LIFE: Experiencing Languages

Halloween at Peartree Languages

Do you like to dress up for Halloween? Is your house full of Halloween decorations and pumpkins weeks before the actual celebration? Do you fancy Halloween events? Or do you think this day is a bit overrated and all the fuss around it just annoys you?

Halloween as such became very commercialised within the last few decades but many people forgot where this very old tradition came from and why we actually celebrate it. So let’s look at some boring facts first and later reveal some exciting info about how our Peartree Halloween themed party went yesterday.

Halloween has its roots in the ancient, pre-Christian Celtic festival of Samhain, which was celebrated on the night of October 31. The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom, and northern France, believed that the dead returned to earth on Samhain and therefore the barrier between our world and the world of ghosts and spirits got really thin on this day. The tradition of All Hallows' Eve falls on 31st October each year, and this day is also known as All Saints' Day in the Christian calendar. The Church traditionally held a vigil on All Hallows' Eve when worshippers would prepare themselves with prayers and fasting prior to the feast day itself.

As for the trick or treating, or “guising” (from “disguising”), traditions, beginning in the Middle-Ages, children and sometimes poor adults would dress up in costumes and go around door to door during Hallowmas begging for food or money in exchange for songs and prayers. Another reason why people started to wear costumes was to ward off roaming ghosts. Later Guising gave way to threatening pranks in exchange for sweets.
In other words, the sentence “Trick or treat” which children say when standing by your door with a basket means you could either be nice and give them sweets or naughty and give them nothing and receive a trick or prank in exchange. For example, in Wales, the kids nowadays knock on your door only if you “invite” them by lightning a pumpkin in front of your house.

In fact celebrating Halloween is mostly a British and American thing. Therefore we in Peartree made a party, so our international students could enjoy the spirit of Halloween night. On their way to the party, they could see kids trick or treating on the Welsh streets and on their way from our party they could see how the locals go crazy and wearing masks and costumes queuing up before clubs. Most importantly, our students could enjoy the fun with our staff, teachers and other young people wearing costumes. And I must say that some of the costumes were really authentic.

Our party was in Calabrisella, an Italian restaurant just around the corner, which provided us with amazing food! I don’t think someone has managed to take a picture of how great the food looked like as everyone was busy with eating.
There was also a possibility to play our own music, so we started from the modern songs, went through old classics like Abba towards popular Spanish music and we finished with a Czech song (below) which basically summarized this party as the interpret Karel Gott sings about happiness and carnival costumes.

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About Peartree Languages

Peartree Languages is a language school located in Cardiff.


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