I woke up and thought – election!
But, it was only 4 and the polls were not yet open.
I went back to sleep.
By 6 a.m. I’m up again. Still too early to vote. I prepare for class and talk elections with various persons by phone. Including with someone who is hiding in England, waiting for this to be over. I feed her some horror scenarios, just to keep her on the toes and awake for the night ahead.
I don’t expect long lines at my polling place. Not at the time that I vote (after 9). It’s mostly seniors. The young working people (and students) are gone. Working.
Oh oh. My bike has a flat. No time to change it. I need to vote and get to class. I borrow a car.
At the polling place, the ones handing out ballots cannot spell my name even though I repeat it slowly six times. Then they can’t find my name at all. Even though I have already voted here once. Thankfully we can register on the day of elections. So I register AGAIN and wonder if next year there will be TWO Nina Camics on the log.
I vote, but not with one straight arrow – along my party line. That’s too fast. I need to savor the pleasure of connecting the arrow for my candidate.
On campus, it is a day of such exuberance! Of course. We are experiencing record highs. Temperature-wise (record breaking). Election-wise.
Purchase photo 2195
I get stickers slapped onto my shirt saying that I voted. I wear them happily – it is the unison of us voters that creates a winner. One act of voting doesn’t do it, but united in our voting effort we produce a winner. And so it is this moment of recognizing that our solitary act of casting a vote isn’t so solitary after all, we all did it, we with stickers saying so – I voted! – that gives the pleasure of accomplishing something as a group – of campus people, Madison people, Wisconsin people, Americans.
(No, I see no McCain supporters openly pushing their team today. Naderites - yes, though I found them to be, well, not really photogenic.)
I settle in for a long coffee and work my way through the rest of the afternoon until it’s time for class.
After, I hurry home, pick up some champagne and head over to the Sad Libs – a group with which I watched elections four years ago.
Today, young and old, we were on the hopeful end of things.
Not so sad right now. Hopeful and proud.