Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Fun Voting

I'll walk to vote this morning, as I have for fourteen years. Gotta love it when the polling place is in a church a block away! I'll take Blackeyed Susan and Alvin Fernald, as I have since they were old enough to walk with me. I want them to know that voting is important, and is a God-given privilege.

In 2000, the year that President Bush ran the first time, we had a unique situation. Don Quixote and Joe Hardy were living at home, not yet moved out on their own. Violet lived in an upstairs apartment of a house across the street from us. Johnny Tremain and Forget-me-not were at college, Johnny just seven blocks away, and Forget-me-not an hour away. But their "official residence" was still here at home. So for seven of us in the same family, we voted in the same precinct. So I gathered the troops and asked them if we could all walk over "as a family," and vote together. Forget' wasn't too happy--we had to drive down to get her the night before, and then get her back to campus for a nine o'clock class. Charming and Violet had to be to work at eight. MacGuyver (17) also had to be at school then. So this meant that we would troop on over to the church at six-thirty. A.M. (insert Groans and Complaints.)

I called the newspaper to send a reporter. I mean, they always had "man-on-the-street" articles on Election Day. He met us at the church, and asked us who we would vote for. I gave him my Mother's standard answer. This she gave us, unsolicited, every Election Day growing up. "Now, when I married your father, I promised to Obey him. But there is one thing that even he can't ask me to do. When I get into the voting booth, it is between Me and God. Alone. This is what it means to have the right to vote." I had already told my children this story...a "few" times, so they chuckled at the reporter's efforts to solicit our decisions.

After we voted (all ten of us went, even the three that couldn't vote--hey, they could be Patriotic as well!), we took pictures in the foyer of the church, and went home to begin our days, with Susan and Alvin and me driving Forget-me-not back to college, and McDonald's on the way home. A very, very special day that few families get to share.

Now we are scattered to the four winds, although Johnny and Lily live four blocks away, so they still vote at the church. My plan may have to change a little. Lily called to say she is bringing the littles over this morning (because it is raining), and Susan will watch them while we girls vote. Or maybe Susan and Alvin and the babes can walk with us, and we'll all go together. We'll have to see. Voting with Lily would be another Fun Voting Experience!


tam said...

What a lovely, lovely way to vote! I really enjoyed this relaying of your family practice!

My babes had to stay home from the vote as they were still within a 24 hour contagious-with-strep period of time.

My 8 year old would have had a distinct opinion on who she would be have voted for, if she could have voted!!!

G.L.H. said...

Dear Tam,
Gotta love 8-year olds. I wonder what would happen if 8-year-olds controlled the Senate?

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