I just got in from voting. In the past, voting in DC was easy. The only long lines were in the actual building where you voted. Not this time, to my great pleasure. I was so excited to see the long line in my old neighborhood, wrapping around the building, down the hill, and approaching the main thoroughfare. And this was all before 7AM when the polls opened. Some brought lawn chairs with them. Someone even left their car radio on to help make the time go by. It was a beautiful sight to see. I’m not a DC transplant, like a lot of the current DC residents. I’m a native of the District of Columbia, raised in the area known to some as the continent of Southeast…LOL. I’m sure I had a huge grin on my face as I greeted my neighbors of every age. They grinned back as they greeted me. The highlight of it all was the display that the first guy to vote gave. He came out with a real slow pimp to his step. He held his hands up waiting for our applause (which we, of course, gave as we cheered). He took out a bottle of water and poured some to his right and left for the ancestors and all those that didn’t make it too see this day and then he drank. It was hilarious and moving at the same time because he was mostly serious. He shouted some things to us that I won’t repeat, but let’s just say he was preaching to the choir.
It took a little more than an hour for me to actually get to the voting machine, which was not too bad, considering the length of the line. I didn’t anticipate my emotions getting the best of me. It all started when I signed my name in the clerk’s book. I saw my dad’s signature on the same page. My parents were in line, though far ahead of me. I ended up not too far from behind them in the voting machine line (there was only one machine, so a lot of people chose paper). I saw my dad turn around after he finished voting. He had a satisfied looking grin on his face in a way that I’d never seen. I was acting like a big child wanting hugs from both of my parents, as if I didn’t hug them when I first saw them in line outside and wasn’t 30 years old and on my way to their house when I was done anyway. LOL. A song started playing in my head the closer it got to be my turn to vote. I was almost in tears and had to get myself together so I could make sure I could actually see the screen. I was also getting a bit impatient, wondering what was taking people so long to make a few selections on a screen. I quickly found out… The screens weren’t confusing at all. There was no possible way to confuse who you were voting for. It took me so long because I stared at the screen (like everyone else) sounding out in my head “B-A-R-A-C-K O-B-A-M-A..B-I-D-E-N”. I think I looked at it for a solid minute as if I didn’t know how to read. Then I looked for JohnMcCain’s/Sarah Palin’s name on the screen just to make sure there would be no accidents. Wisely, they weren’t even close to each other. The next screen even showed you your final selections. Yes, I stared at that for about another minute before I finally selected “Cast your Ballot” on the screen.
I didn’t mean to write a novel, but I am savoring the moment. Feel free to share your voting experience with us!