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And this was my ballot (well, part of it, anyway!):

From what I’ve been told, I wasn’t supposed to have any kind of recording device in the voting booth with me. However, I wasn’t being sneaky about anything: I snapped¬†photos of fellow voters and election officials before and after I voted, and no one said a word about the digital camera I had hanging around my neck. (Ah, the power of the press!)And, no, I’m not posting the picture of my ballot now just because Barack Obama was, indeed,¬†elected to be our 44th president. I actually attempted to post it here AND on the Pem Hall Web site (I’d include a link, but you can’t get in without a password, anyway) last night, but strangely enough, my computer was acting all funky and laggy and weird, and after a couple of attempts, I bailed.Election Day wasn’t the greatest for me, personally, but it ended on one of the highest notes imaginable.

Starting around 9 a.m., my throat felt like it was on fire (it started out scratchy and became more irritating as the day wore on), and by mid-afternoon, I was feeling very lethargic. I made it through work and then completed some chores, all the while knowing I was going to spend at least a portion of my evening at the local courthouse. Fortunately, this was one of those elections in which most of the “real” contests, locally, had taken place earlier this year in the primary (big, big-time Democratic country down here … which doesn’t exactly explain why John McCain carried most of the counties in this part of the state, but believe me, I have a few theories about that), so I didn’t have to spend too long at the courthouse.

Then I was back at home, crashed out on the couch, just in time to watch the next-to-next-to-next-to-last episode, ever, of The Shield — while also switching over to various networks’ (mostly WGN, MSNBC, ABC and Fox News … with a little Comedy Central mixed in there, too!) coverage of the election results during the commercial breaks.

As soon as The Shield ended, I flipped over to ABC, just in time to see the announcement that Obama had clinched the presidency.

I felt extremely happy and also very relieved, but if I had to use just one word to describe my overall state of mind, I would have to say “hopeful.” Which is the adjective that sums up how I have felt about Obama from early on in the campaign, back when The Lovely urged me to “listen to what he has to say” and told me he was the first politician who had inspired any kind of hope in her since John F. Kennedy.

I feel hopeful that our new president will show the kind of leadership that can help this country get back on track. I am hopeful that the change he speaks of might have begun last night when the unthinkable — or, at most, something that would have been unthinkable just 30 or 40 years ago — occurred. I hope I and the other 18 million or so voters who picked Barack Obama are right about what we see in him.

Granted, I STILL detest politics, and I’m not naive enough to think that one person will solve all the problems in our country overnight. Or over the span of a few months, or even a few years. I do find myself hoping, though, that this is a step in the right direction.

Now: If only my throat would quit hurting. (Damn sinuses!)

August 2020

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