Tuesday, November 4, 2008


The day dawned chill and blustery, the kind of gray day that makes you want to sleep late and sip hot cocoa over an unhurried breakfast. But that wasn't a luxury this day afforded. Dressing as quickly as my not-quite-ill-but-not-quite-right body would allow, I reviewed my choices, checked names, reread amendments.

And then I was off.

The line at the school was lengthy long before I arrived at 8:30 a.m., stretching out the door and around the parking lot for nearly a quarter of a mile. The people in line were quiet, mostly bundled against the cold and damp that the wind kept whipping against their faces. A slow shuffling rippled through the line occasionally, giving hope to the faint of heart. I added myself to the end, preparing myself to practice a cheerful spirit.

An hour passed. I had reached the canopy, a very slight protection from the mist, and a small victory of sorts. My stomach clenched as the condition from earlier emphasized itself. But I would not leave the line. My task was too important to be interrupted for any reason.

One and a half hours. I could see the tiny cubicles which were my destination. Sorting us, the workers shuffled the lines to verify our identities. Confirmed in who I was, I proceeded...right, away from my goal. A very long line yet awaited me down a stretch of hallway unseen until now. The line reached to the doors at the opposite end of the hall, though no one was exiting. As each face rounded that corner, it fell, realizing that the wait was not over.

Two hours, fifteen minutes. A slight motion from a seated woman told me that my moment had come. Now was my chance, a culmination of hours of attempted indoctrination, of research, of conversations and contemplations.

It was finally my turn to cast my vote.

A few minutes to review, to be sure I had marked all that I intended, and it was done. My hours had been redeemed, my voice had been expressed.

As I strode out the doors, I placed myself in another line, the line to the throne of God. Having done my part, I cast the outcome, the blessings and the cursings, before that holy throne, returning to my walk of faith down the sidewalk of an elementary school.


(c) 2008


t said...

Hours of research? I'm proud. I believed you this morning but didn't really think you had done that much. Good work my friend :) .

Oh, and as I read your story I laughed at both of us. We - as far as weather goes - are now southern. I read your "cold, damp" adjectives and flashed back to the weather check I had done about that time as I got ready myself. 60's, my friend. 61 to be exact. Windy - yes. Damp - yes. And thus, feeling chilly - yes. But cold? I thought of my mom and her weather and our MO friends and friends up North and I have to laugh at us. I say "us" because I too had a sweater and jacket. Sad. Very sad.

Jerry said...

Not to make you feel bad, but I voted on 10/24. I walked right in the door of the early voting place, and was on my way out 15 minutes later.

It appears that 50% of NM voters took advantage of either early or absentee voting.

My hat is off to you for your sacrifice.

ShalomSeeker said...

T: Hours for all those things combined. I cannot claim it was hours of research.

And, it was MUCH colder two-1/2 hours earlier when I went and you were still at home... But it was probably still only in the 50s. ;-)

Uncle J: My state didn't do 'early voting' per se. You could do absentee voting, but had to qualify under one of a dozen or so reasons...So I couldn't do what you did. But even so, there were two and three hour lines for the absentee voters, so I don't know if it would have made much of a difference. :-)

And I'm trying really hard not be be jealous. I'll just appreciate its value as a great story... lol.

joyce said...

Wow---sorry you had to wait so long. Yikes. We had early voting, and I am glad because it reduced the lines. Hot here. Got sweaty walking around the block.

No matter what, God is in control.

Rachel said...

Well, I am now watching Obama speech about how WE did this. Sorry sir, but I did not do THIS.

I voted tonight, in and out in 15 minutes.

Oh, yeah, a first dog. Whatever.

How many siblings does he have, he can not even name them. He only names 2 and then to the other siblings. again, Whatever!