The other day I found myself in the middle of a debate about Halloween and its celebration in Hungary. It was a versatile bunch when it comes to age and I was surprised to see that the dividing line between the pro-spooky group and anti-ghost group was clear: the oldies were plainly against it, while young’uns like myself didn’t mind a bit of a scare. In addition to democracy, the biggest American export is probably holidays. They are very good at it. Although Valentine’s Day was first celebrated in England in the 14th century and its rebirth also took place there – in the 18th century – we now think of it as an American invention, and a lot of countries started to mimic it. At least, so say the haters of V-Day. But the fact is Saint Valentine’s Day is an official feast day not only in the Anglican Communion but in the Lutheran Church as well, and many parts of the Eastern Orthodox Church also celebrate it (albeit on different dates). My point with all of this is that the celebration of the day of love is not only because we are trying to mimic America, but it also has roots in European culture as well. The same is pretty much true for Halloween, or All Hallow’s Evening as it was originally called. So don’t worry about a giant Mickey Mouse floating down Andrássy út on the fourth Thursday of November. You are not an American and you have no idea what I’m talking about? It proves my point exactly. That’s a reference to the annual Thanksgiving Day parade, which will never become popular in Hungary simply because it doesn’t have any roots here. Ok, I admit that it’s also difficult to monetise for retailers, otherwise they would certainly give it a shot.