November 2, 2004

Can you feel the hope and energy? I can.

Last night, my roommate Rima and I beep-beep-beeped our way down Sunset Blvd. past a mob of people carrying “Fire President Bush” signs. We both felt weighed down by the stress and fear of another letdown, but had to constantly remind ourselves that our emotions could do little to help. We’d just have to put in our votes and hope it counts. Instead, we talked about astrology and eavesdropped on the baristas. Rima read her sample ballot. I wrote a letter to my grandma.

At 7-something this morning, I fell out of bed, threw on jeans and a hoodie and drove three blocks to my polling place, a little Russian church. (In retrospect, I realize I chould have walked, but my brain doesn’t work that early.)

Outside, a man with a tape recorder was interviewing a guy walking his dog. He was a reporter from a local radio sation. Inside, six booths were occupied by people of all shapes, colors and sizes. As I voted, I felt grateful, hopeful and careful.

I went back home to get ready for work and, before leaving, grabbed a coat from the rack that I hadn’t worn since winter. When I tried it on in front of the full-length mirror, I noticed that an “I voted” sticker was still on the lapel from the last election. I took it as a good sign, draped it over my arm, along with my handbag and lunch, and went to work.


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