A-canvassing we go


I'm wiped out. I canvassed for Barack Obama, Mark Warner, and Jim Moran again today--my third time. (Moran's a shoo-in; I don't even know the name of the guy running against him, if there is one.) I started at noon and didn't finish until after five. I took a break at about 2:30 to get a bite to eat (well, ice cream), so I spent a good four hours knocking on doors and asking people whom they were going to vote for.

I canvassed my own neighborhood today, which I've never done before, and it felt strange. I asked for my own precinct and the packet I was handed included the cul-de-sac I live on. I canvassed my next door neighbor, which I'm glad I did because it was a rewarding experience.

My next door neighbor is 94 years old. She's tiny--bent to way less than 5 feet. I was tempted not to bug her. I figured she was a Republican because she's a Mormon. She's really tight with the church; they hold social gatherings at her house which is teeth-grindingly annoying because there isn't enough room on our cul-de-sac for all the cars although sometimes they come in buses. She has a beautiful back yard, which is where they party. I do nothing to discourage my dog from barking at the Mormons when they're out there.

Did I say she's 94 years old? She's sharp, she still drives, and she gets around pretty well. Surprise surprise, she's a Democrat. Her son is a personal friend of Democrat Mark Warner, our popular former governor who's almost certain to win his race for the senate seat of our retiring Republican senator, John Warner. She has an autographed picture of him framed and hanging on her wall. She said her son told her Obama was very intelligent. She said she admires McCain for what he's done; for serving in the Army, for all the pain he endured, but she said "It takes more to be president."

I now believe she's playing the Mormon church. Volunteers from the church do her yard work for free, and I believe they do her housework as well. In exchange for which they hold a few gatherings at her house every year. Quite a deal.

I was most surprised when she told me that she likes to hear my dog bark. A while back he alerted her to the presence of a strange man approaching her front door. Every time she hears Saint bark she goes to the window to see what he's barking at. Unfortunately he barks at her, too. I told her he'd eventually stopped barking at my neighbor across the back fence because she tossed dog biscuits over the fence for years. My 94-year-old neighbor said she'd been tempted to do the same but was afraid I'd object. I told her to feel free to spoil my dog; eventually they'll be friends.

July 2012

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