Before the election
We spent the day in New Hampshire getting the vote out with ACT. We left at 7am and and were the first to check in at the Exeter ACT office. Reminded me of a teacher inservice. All good natured, well meaning people on low budget, explaining to us how we couldn't say, "vote for John Kerry," but could talk about issues. We would be going only to Kerry supporters which made it really easy. They were very impressed with our family enterprise and with Anya who was the littlest activist they had met.
So off we went having difficulty finding our way into the area we had been allocated. The first few houses are anxiety producing, but after that we are more relaxed. It is raining and cold so people are at home all morning and we are averaging about 90%. Maya goes to every house alternating with Jay and me. ONe of us stays with Anya in the car. WE had hoped to walk house to house and carry her, but the weather makes it impossible.
These New Hampshirians must be the most politicized people in the country. Almost every yard had a Kerry/ Edwards or Bush/ Cheney sign. I have been living in Kerry country. All of Boston has bumperstickers with Kerry/ Edwards and with a meager few Bush stickers--quiet a few support the troops. It was a shock to see the huge signs for Bush--a wonder that anyone with a brain could not be ashamed to have one in their yard. But the people we talked to were friendly and cheery and promised to vote, or they already had voted. We were driving down newly asphalted roads to houses with lots of 5/10 acres of woods, mansions, actually, hidden back in the woods--what the hell happened to the trailers and the broken down pickup trucks?
Before noon we saw another car stopped like us in front of a house in the area we were canvassing. They had a Kerry/Edwards sticker. We asked them who they were with and they said Moveon--a husband and wife team that we were glad to see. We drove back into Exeter for lunch--couldn't find the Half Moon that Neil who went to school here had recommended and we ate, getting very sleepy so much so that we stopped in a chocolate shop and stocked up on sugar and caffine which helped us complete our list of contacts. We met the same moveon couple again and passed one Bush/Cheney get out the vote car. The ACT people said they had 37 people out today and that moveon had 12 people just in the little town we were canvassing. All this in the rain and cold. Listened to the news on the way back getting so agitated at the destruction to registration ballots--the total contempt for the process by the RNC that I meditated for an hour or so before I could calm down. And now with Osama in the elecction who knows how it will turn out.
But each day is a new day.
Love the fall back. This morning slept and slept dreaming dreams of my mother and Anya in our house in Corydon, Indiana. What' s Anya doing here!!! But how wonderful!!!
The day was sunny and warm and I drove down Mass ave which was deserted except for falling copper and orange leaves floating down and littering the sides of the street. Boston seemed to be sleeping in after the Red Sox party.
I decided to go on over to the Insight center. They are having a weeklong mediation, picked particularly to go along with the anxiety and agitation of the elecction. Spent the day there finally getting calm and centered. As I left one of the teachers in training was saying "Oh don't watch that now because if he wins, you'll be even more pissed" Farenheit 9/11 I guessed.
I came back for supper with Jay and Maya, unfortunately missing Anya in her bee costume for Halloween--she was in her diapers standing by the couch with a big grin for me as I entered. The streets were filled with all manner of weird creatures, most of them very tiny, looking for porches with the light on and chittering among themselves while their human parents looked on.
All week long I go in the evening to the retreat center to meditate and finish with the next weekend. I keep reminding myself and Maya that no matter what happens we will keep our values and continue to live our lives, rich as they are with skills and ease, caring about what happens to others.
Our assignment at themeditation center was to watch how we relate to our anxiety and worry. Do we push it away, drown it in distraction, hold it with compassion, get angry and rage?