I rarely talk about politics. It is too good a way to lose old friends and make new enemies. Nonetheless, the experience of voting in a small town (compared to the city where once we lived) is a pleasurable experience to be shared.
In the city, one finds a parking space invariably too distant from the polling place to make it an easy hike, especially with Noelle trying to keep up in braces & crutches or a wheelchair. Then, there are the long lines, which take a half hour or more to get through. By the time we would reach the head of the line, all too often I would reach for my ID and realize that I had left it in the car. Another hike! Back and forth, then trying to talk my way back to the head of the line while Donnie, Lizzie, Noelle, and Shane were already voting... Rushing through the half-memorized ballot in order to catch up with the others, I would meet them somewhere near the car door. Afterward we would drive home, tired.
Tonight in tiny San Ignatio, however, we drove up to the school parking lot, where we had our choice of spots. If we were to line up everyone in town end to end, it might take as much as an hour to get everyone through the voting process. However, with two polling places to make it easier for those without cars, a surprisingly large number of people here, and 12 hours of being open, there is always a convenient space to park and never any waiting line. One lady was walking her dog outside, waiting for her husband to finish voting, when we walked up. In we went. "Hi, Beth," Margaret, one of the poll workers, called out. No need for ID here! Donnie and I were handed our ballots. We filled them out and left five minutes later, after having hugged Margaret and catching up on mutual news. The evening was young, and we were already out of the house. So, we went to dinner and a movie.
Yep, voting in a small town is a special kind of experience. Relaxing.