Turning 21 and Halloween all in a week

Kate Rehwinkel, Columnist

In St. Louis where I grew up, it is a tradition for trick-or-treaters to tell a joke before they are given candy on your doorstep. On a busy night, you might hear 50 to 100 jokes. A lot of the trick-or-treaters are too young to get the humor but are happy to tell a joke in exchange for candy.

Like most children, I loved Halloween. Choosing a costume and then going door to door to have people give me candy was fun, but I also loved giving out the candy. Usually my dad took me trick-or-treating, and my mom stayed home to answer the door. When I got to be too old to go hunting for candy, the best times were the nights that it was so warm out that my mom and I would sit on lawn chairs in our front yard waiting for kids to come up our driveway. Over the years we saw lots of princesses and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

I looked forward to Halloween more than most kids. I was born on Halloween Eve, so every year I got to have two big back-to-back celebrations, and the anticipation and waiting for those two days every year was so hard.

This year is no ordinary birthday; it is my 21st birthday to be exact. Now, I know what you are thinking, that since I will be 21 I will go out to the bars and get a bit tipsy. Wrong. First of all, my birthday is on a Tuesday, and that is a school night, so I will be sober. Plus, I do not like alcohol that much. I would rather spend my 21st birthday with family and my closest friends. Trying to get everyone together for one big birthday party is impossible, so this year my birthday is stretching out for nearly a week.

Saturday, my mom and dad drove up from St. Louis to take me out to lunch in Arthur, where we met my grandparents. Back in Charleston, we had a little birthday celebration with presents and cake with my suitemate and a few friends. My actual birthday on Tuesday will be a quiet day, and then the celebration continues next weekend. On Friday, my friend Sarah is taking me to Steak ‘n Shake to celebrate, and Saturday my other friend Brandy is taking me to Dirty’s Bar and Grill. It makes me happy that my friends are taking the time to make my birthday special this year.

People say that after age 21, birthdays become less exciting and more boring, but I will never stop being excited to turn another year older. This is the day when it is all about me and spending time with my family and my closest friends and getting older and hopefully wiser each year. Here’s to my year as a 21-year-old adult. I hope it’s a good one.

Kate Rehwinkel is a senior management major. She can be reached at 581-2812 or  [email protected].