1. Wow, look at the line, I hope I'm done by 10:30. (Sadly, I had a funeral to attend.)
2. It's great to be standing in line with my daughter/teacher. I don't think we've ever gone to vote together.
3. This lady in front of us is so friendly. We're hearing all about her son, the high school band member who plays the tuba. His name is Caden.
4. It's kind of chilly here in Florida, but I'm so grateful for beautiful weather, because we might be standing outside awhile.
5. I hope the polls are open in NY and NJ. It would be awful if, due to Sandy, people there were unable to vote.
6. A lady who looks like a member of the Kardashian family just joined the line.
7. The line is moving. It's 7:10.
8. Caden's mom remarks that if everyone would just fill out their sample ballot and bring it with them to vote, the process would go so much faster. My daughter and I agree, because we brought our sample ballots too. We're all feeling very pleased with ourselves.
9. The line is growing. Sister Immaculata comes out of her office with two plastic lawn chairs for people who need to sit down. It strikes me as amusingly odd that, for all the contention about God in the public square, our voting station is a church. I love this.
10. The movie The Secret Life of Bees comes to mind and how the character Rosaleen is beaten for walking into town to vote. I think about this for awhile. All the people who don't vote...all the people who think it doesn't make any difference...all the people who just don't care. How did that happen?
11. A couple guys in suits and ties join the line. One has a coffee cup from Starbucks; one has a cup from 7-11.
12. We've moved up in the line enough to read the placards on easels that talk about voter fraud. There is a map that outlines our voting district. A quarter of an inch to the left, and we'd be in another precinct.
13. A guy in a brown FedEx uniform gets in line.
14. Caden's Mom tells us she doesn't care if she's late to work, she's going to vote, no matter how long it takes. This makes my heart smile.
15. I notice a few walkers and canes in the line. I love this.
16. A lady a few spots ahead of us calls to my daughter that they used to work together at the health food store. My daughter says, yes, I remember, and they chat for a minute.
17. We're just inside the building. There are probably two dozen rickety, aluminum voting cubbies set up. I pull out my driver's license. The C-D sign-in line is the longest. The U-Z sign-in station doesn't even have an attendant. I'm assuming the S-T person slides over when necessary.
18. Here we go - my daughter signs in, I sign in, and we disperse into open cubbies. I fill out my ballot in three minutes. Love that pre-completed ballot!
19. I feed the four-page ballot into the machine that sucks the thing in to be counted later and receive my "I Voted" sticker. It's now 7:45 am.
20. As I walk to my car, I'm happy to see the line is still long and growing. Even if we don't completely like anybody who's running for anything, it's important to make the best informed choice and cast a ballot. I'm so grateful I live in a country where this is a privilege. When I was 20, I didn't appreciate it as much as I do now.
21. I hope Florida does not hold up the results this year, like it did in 2000. If there's a problem, I hope it's in another state. Like North Dakota. We never hear anything about North Dakota. It needs some press coverage.
22. I pray, regardless of who wins, both sides are willing to compromise a bit to get things done.
23. As contentious as America politics can be, I do not want to live in any other country. Freedom is messy sometimes.
24. To the Starbucks suit, the 7-11 suit, Caden's mom, the FedEx guy, the Kardashian chick, the health store colleague, the senior citizens, and especially Rosaleen - thanks for showing up.
Did you vote today?