Old School: Worth the 'wait'

Troy Krause
Redwood Falls Gazette

I am willing to admit I was more than a little anxious when I woke up Nov. 3.

I knew I had a busy schedule starting with an 8:30 a.m. county board meeting, and with several other commitments throughout the day I was wondering if I was going to be able to get everything on the list accomplished in a reasonable amount of time.

Honestly, it wasn’t a whole lot different than any other first Tuesday of the month, and with the city council in Redwood Falls not meeting that night, the schedule had actually opened up a bit.

Then it quickly got more and more full.

As I looked at the day’s “to do” list, I started to run through my head how I was going to get it all done, and then I saw it.

It was that red circle with the white writing donned on the shirt of a community member as they passed me in the government center.

“Oh yeah,” I recalled internally. “I need to add voting to that list.”

No problem, I thought, there was plenty of time to get that done before the polls closed at 8 p.m.

So, I shifted my focus, put my head down and got busy doing everything I needed to do.

Settling into interview mode, I met with three people you are going to be reading about in the coming weeks, and by the time that was all over it was 3:30 p.m. (There were a few breaks in between, but it never would have been enough time to make the trek to Vesta and back.)

I started wishing I had taken my own advice the previous week and voted absentee.

I have only voted absentee once in my life a few years ago when I knew that I would not make it to the polling place on time.

Having heard about lines at the polls, I started to get even more nervous and determined to wrap things up to make sure I had enough time to get to the community hall to where the Underwood Township election judges were waiting for me. (Well, not me personally, but those of us from God’s country who had not shown up yet.)

I knew I needed gas, but looked at the gauge and determined I could get there and still to a gas station later this week. So, if you see me walking along Highway 19 with a gas can in my hand you know what happened.

Finally, I got to the polls, walked in the door and found out I would have to wait.

I had never had to do that before – there were actually three people in line in front of me.

The good news is that I had more than enough time to exercise my privilege.

I think it was a little after 5 p.m. when I walked out of the hall with my red “I voted” sticker.

It was definitely worth the wait, but probably not the worry.