Tuesday, November 4, 2008

"Signed, sealed, delivered..." (I voted)

At 5:15 am, Rob and I were the first ones at the local high school. We wandered around, getting in the way of the folks setting up, and finally settled on the floor near the gym doors.

#3 walked in around 5:30, a woman in perhaps her mid-fifties, who joined us on the floor. She was in for a double hit of citizenship today, showing up to vote early so that she could get to superior court for jury duty. What was on her mind? How to care for her 90-year-old father if she got called to serve on a jury (he can't stand very well, so she had taken him to vote last week). But the real news was the near-simultaneous arrival of two babies -- in her handbag were snapshots of the lovely bundles with two sets of happy parents and her husband, a beaming grandpa with both arms full. I report for the blog that Brin and Sienna are beauties already, cousins born just weeks apart.

As we left at 6:10, the line was out the door and down the sidewalk, toward the flagpole.

Did you vote? Tell us about it in the comments...

UPDATE:  I was at a conference yesterday (annual meeting of the American Academy of Religion) and, in the shuttle on the way to the airport, fell into conversation with the woman seated next to me.  She was a scholar of Hinduism, Indian, but she taught in South Africa, where her family had lived for three generations.  She said that things had become much more difficult with the recent global economic crisis, as the rand was losing value rapidly -- thus she was exiting the expensive conference and heading home a day early.  I mentioned that Obama was scheduled to speak in the park near our hotel the next night (tonight), and asked if the election was as much on the radar in the rest of the world as our press said it was.  Oh yes, she said, we follow it very closely.  Oh, I said, a bit restrained, sort of self-consciously wanting not to seem like another American who thinks that the U.S. is the center of the world.

"You know," she said, with no small pride, leaning in so that I didn't miss it, "he's African."  She nodded with satisfaction, this Indian woman who had thrown her lot in with South Africa, having made her point.