South African General Elections 2014 – A Blast It Has Been (Pt 1 of 2)
As general elections wrap up, I thought I should write my take on the general elections, as well as the “per-election” time frame. From the other election time frames (2008-2009), (2003-2004), I must say, this election time frame (2013-2014) has been the most entertaining ever – from scandals flying left right and center, to the rise of new political parties and figures – and of course, we cannot forget all the gibberish between the two 🙂
I have decided to split this up into 2 posts – this post will highlight my experience of voting…the other post will just be a rather “silly” post.
First thing that really makes this election time so important to me was the fact it was my first time voting – yes, I am part of the so-called “born-Free’s”. I woke up 7:30am, put on my shoes, brushed my teeth, and tucked my ID in my pocket, from there I was off to the voting station! I thought I would stay +- 15 minutes, but I ended up staying for about an hour….the line of voters was long. I had no earphones to listen to my music, so I had to stand in the line and watch.
As I was standing in the line, the vibe was really awesome, there were other “born-Free’s” who were just as eager as I was to make their vote. Other than that, the weather was not too kind – it was quite windy with a slight drizzle. Strangely enough, as much as I hated being in such a long line, I enjoyed it for some reason – this was partly due to it being my first time making my vote, that I decided to go and vote (I was planning to sit this one out), and that it was nice seeing people of all ages taking their time to vote.
I got to the front of the line, it was my turn to make my vote…I had such a huge smile on my face – if you saw me, you would swear that I had taken some Mary Jane. I got to the voting stand, they gave me two ballot sheets – one for provincial and the other for national. I made my vote in both sheets, crept up slowly to the ballot boxes, deposited my votes and walked off to get my finger tip marked (the official “I-have-voted” seal I assume). This must have been what Nelson Mandela really felt when he made his vote in 1994, the joy and excitement – the warm feeling you get that you played a role in making your opinion count 🙂
Overall, I loved the feeling of voting, it made me feel so warm inside – I will definitely be voting in future elections – just one note I have made to myself: Do not forget your jacket on cold voting days!!