I’ve done my civic duty

(This morning’s view of the pond)

And I was more than happy to do so.  This is the first time in a long time in which I voted for someone rather than against someone else.  The “lesser of two evils” vote is not, in my opinion, an exciting kind of vote.

Today I happily and with some excitement as well as hope cast my vote for Barack Obama.

It was surprisingly quick and easy.  The local news at noon had lots of stories and video of long lines in this area.  M and I decided to go just after lunch time hoping to avoid a long line.  The parking lot at the place where we vote was filled with vehicles, but we found a parking space easily enough.  Judging by the number of cars, I thought for sure we’d have at least a short wait.  I was wrong.  Imagine our amazement when we went inside to find there was no line at all.  Just one guy ahead of us and he was pretty much finished with the ID portion of the process and on his way to the booth (not sure why they call them booths anymore since they aren’t booths at all).

We use the Diebold voting machines here (a little about them here).  I’m not too thrilled with that, but didn’t think the paper alternative was necessarily a better way to go.  You do have a choice to use either the machine or the paper ballot.  While I didn’t have any trouble voting, one of the things that concerned me was the way the ballot was set up.  I wish I’d thought to take my camera along (are they allowed in the voting booth??).

The first page of the ballot lists the candidates for President.  McCain is first on the list.  He is followed by several people, some of whom I’ve never heard of.  Nowhere on the first page of the ballot will you find Barack Obama.  Someone easily confused might think he’d been left off the ballot.  He shows up on the next page.  But I have to admit to a split second of confusion when I didn’t see Barack Obama’s name in with all the other candidates.

I’m curious now…  Does anyone know how they decide the order on the ballot?  It was obviously not alphabetical.  I couldn’t find anything about it during a quick search.  I did, however, find this article about how ballot order matters.

Just before heading out to vote, this guy came crawling across the back lawn:

I think it’s a midland painted turtle, but I’m not sure.  According to Ted Andrews in his book Animal Speak: The Spiritual & Magical Powers of Creatures Great & Small, the painted turtle may teach you about the use and power of color.  That’ll come in handy as I’m currently working on a project that involves colors.

The weather is once again sunny and warm.  Perfect for getting back out to the garden.  Which is where I’m headed now.  This evening, I imagine, will be spent watching television, waiting on the election results.

Should be interesting, no matter how it turns out.