I spent the greater part of last week in a bit of a tizzy, I had a nervous tummy and was getting really worried, with the long lines I was seeing during early voting just how was I going to vote and get to The Wine Country in time to open the shop? Tuesday is our super under staffed day, there is typically only two of us, (not counting owners, Randy and Dale. Dale is great on the phones and working the register but feels uncomfortable selling wine on the floor, Randy a rock star on the sales floor doesn’t know how to work the register and doesn’t hear the phone…not to mention both are pretty busy with the task of running their business) so being late was simply not an option. I had fully excepted that I may have to wake up at the ass crack of dawn to cast my vote in this historic election….I was okay with it but still worried about running out of time.
I was off yesterday and while being a total slouch on my couch it hit me…..”I’m working Sunday”…..”When I work Sunday I am off on……. Tuesday!” I picked up my phone and sent a text message to Merritt who was working, “Hey am I off tomorrow?” an hour later I got a text back, “You are off tomorrow, Hooray!”. Most of the time I get twitchy when I have three days away from the store, I worry about my section, wonder if there are special orders to attend to and it just seems weird to be away for that many days straight but yesterday I was elated that I was off for another day…..I’ll deal with the shop on Wednesday, I am off on election day!
When I woke up this morning I was curled up with my, “snuggle buddy” (sadly that is not my husband, it is a super squishy pillow that I deemed unsuitable for actually resting my head on but it is perfect for cuddling…..my husband hates it and is always threatening to do any number of horrible things to it. He is jealous but I keep assuring him that if he were not full of all those pesky bones that keep me from folding him in half, he would be my first choice) I could smell the wet concrete on the basketball court outside my window. It had stopped raining and the sun was shining on the freshly, “washed” world outside, I pulled the covers up to my shoulders, adjusted “snuggle buddy” and let the cool wet stone scented air blow across my face with only one thought streaming through my mind…..This just feels like a fresh start.
When I tired of my own thoughts and the quiet hiss from the bedroom fan I climbed out of bed, got my cup of coffee and flipped on the television to watch the coverage…..there it was, there they all were, long lines of people waiting to make their voice heard….two seconds in my eyes were watering and my heart was swelling with pride….white, black, young, old, veterans and protesters all in line, together casting their ballot, being part of the process, that is truly American. I have been lamenting for years the apathetic attitude with which many approach the political process, “What is my one vote going to prove?” or “Why should I vote, those people don’t care about me” and my personal favorite, “I don’t have the time”….well, with that kind of thinking you get what you deserve, if you are not going to help pick the leaders then you are correct, they won’t care about you, your vote is pointless and in economic times like these you may just have plenty of free time on your hands….fiddle away Nero, I’m making my voice heard!
The energy around this election is palpable, people are excited, engaged and really talking about things….it is amazing! As my husband and I marched out of our apartment this morning with sample ballots in hand our adorable neighbor pressed his face against the screen and yelled, “Go Vote!”…..I was a puddle…he had been clearly coaxed my his Mother but hearing that cute little voice yell those very important words…..Just feels like a fresh start.