Absenteeism Makes My Heart Grow Fonder

September 24, 2014 – Day 378

Since I turned eighteen, I have never missed an opportunity to vote in a federal election. Even when I was in Peru for the 2012 presidential election, I had registered online with my home state of Virginia to ensure that they would be able to send me an absentee ballot.

The 2014 mid-term elections are almost upon us and I am ever-so-grateful that I do not have to be bombarded with advertisements on the TV and radio telling me how Candidate ABC will unleash Hell’s minions unless I vote for Candidate XYZ.

After our family’s move to Thailand, I once again contacted the necessary authorities and alerted them to my new address. So, being the lover of elections that I am, I was beside myself with joy upon joy that my absentee ballot showed up in today’s mail.

Voting absentee is a wee bit different from touching the screen back home. First off, the actual ballot itself is in a sealed envelope. I can only open it in front of a witness and in the view of said witness, I must mark may ballot (although I can cover up who and what I vote for). When I have made all of my Xs on my choices, then I fold up my ballot and place it in another envelope and seal that one up. I sign and the witness sign and then I drop the envelope with my choices into a mailbox.

On my ballot this year, I have a United States Senator to vote for, a member of the House of Representatives, an amendment to the state constitution of Virginia, and three county bond requests.

I can’t wait to open up my ballot and savor the sweet smell of democracy.

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