We went to our usual polling place today. It was eerie because so much of our district was burned or threatened by the fire. Our official residence in the County is the big gaping hole in the ground that used to be house.

We vote at the the Dump. While I am sure other polls are located at county dumps, it is not common. Ours is quite a nice facility, actually. We always get a laugh out of saying it though. “We vote at the dump.” “You have got to be kidding me.” “No, seriously we vote at the county dump.”

We like voting at the dump. It makes me feel special that we have such a unique poling place. When George Bush Junior was running for his second term the line was long. We stood outside with the trucks and the piles of gravel in the cold for 20 minutes with the wind battering us. Tonight it was cool but we were able to go right in and vote. We were happy to see that business was brisk even thought the line was not long. We saw other fire affected people. One person we talked with is still in the hotel four months after the fire.

After we voted we stopped by the gaping hole in the ground that is our voter registration address. It was sad and distressing. We are close but each day that passes makes it harder to envision. Each day that passes means one more day in a house that we are glad to be able to stay in that is not our own and does not suit us. In some ways it makes us feel like are living someone else’s life.

Later we texted with my niece who voted in her first election today. It was fun to think of her being old enough to vote. She has always been strong about her political beliefs and was excited to finally be able to vote. We discussed the future and how important it was to vote. We discussed how much we valued voting and being able to live in a country where we all work together. Each of our votes is small drip into the river that flows from our history and toward our futures.

Tonight voting also brought sadness since it is so official and it defines us by what we were, not what we are. We were registered voters with an address that was a physical place where we lived. Now we are registered voters who cannot live in the gaping hole that is our official address.

My niece helped us see how hopeful it is that our county can have elections and individuals have a right to vote. Seeing that puts in perspective. We shall be hopeful both about the country and about our hole in the ground. By next year’s vote the country will have created history and will continue its stalwart march toward the future. God willing, this will be the only year we will vote when our voter registration address is burned shadow of our land with a gaping hole that was our house.

photo of white fur dog sitting against snow with mountains

This is Bella a foster dog we had. She is sitting in front of the house that is now a hole on the ground since it burned. None of the vegetation showing in this photo until the very back ridge on the left survived the fire.