Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Nov 4, 2008, 6:14 am

The poll workers were still setting up a tape for the lines that were projected to occur-- and I was first in line!

There were three young pollworkers and two older pollworkers scrambling to get ready.

Luckily, the lights from the the interior of the beauty shop meant I could read while I was waiting, and the canopy was overhead to protect me from the showers that never materialized. At 6:18, the next voter in line appeared behind me as the flags were being hung outside the polling place.

And then there were three.

At 6:32 there were four-- and more arriving, searching in vain for parking. The sole Anglo present was the poll captain. At 6:35 my downstairs neighbor arrived with two others in tow, and a fellow who was lost trying to find his polling place down the street.

At 6:59 the number four bus slowed down and stopped as the bus driver looked over the line (my polling station was in the middle of the block), then he continued on his way.

As the poll opened, the line already snaked to the corner at Wilton Place.

"Inch bessek," I greeted Andy, the poll worker just inside the door (his name sticker indicated he spoke Armenian). He only was startled for a split second; in this 'hood, anybody is likely to speak any language. At 7:14, I was joking with my downstairs neighbor still in line as I left. The sun came out and it looked glorious.

Not until I got on the bus did I realized that Esperanza, the nervous adult poll worker, had forgotten to give me my ballot stub--only my I Voted sticker. So I went back and got that sucker! The downside was, our polling place didn't get any of the ballots with the date printed on them... there was nothing to indicate that it was from this election at all. But I'll know. I'll have to keep it with my official sample ballot.

I went to Groundwork Coffee for my semi-legal (first) free coffee offered to voters today (I'll head over to Starbucks for the other later, when the buzz wears off). The CNN building was running very generic election news on it's electronic ticker sign across the street, as if they were downplaying the historical significance of the day. Mother Nature was providing a show overhead, however, with marvelous swirling clouds begging a photographer to take their picture. If not for a few puddles and the rain-washed windows, you might have never known that it had showered much of the night.

Gee, it feels good to be alive right this moment.

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