Thursday, November 6, 2008

Election from abroad

It's easy to be left out of the loop when living abroad. I have no idea what movies or songs are popular back home right now, what the latest trends are, what's the big marketing campaign for Halloween and Thanksgiving, and I'm okay with all that because it keeps life simpler.

The only real downside was when it came to the election. I woke up Tuesday morning slightly excited about the election, about change on the horizon...only to remember that I was 13 hours ahead of the States (Daylight Savings Time couldn't have been pushed back another week, no?) and had another 36 hours to wait for results.

Wednesday morning I bolted out of bed at my normal time of seven am...only to remember again I still had yet another hour before polls started closing. Leanna was worse than I was; halfway through our first class she remembered about the election, after which she started to freak out, "What if Obama doesn't win?"

We get three breaks during our four hours of class, and during each break someone was running back to the dorms to check the votes. After the first break it was 77-34 Obama, but an hour later he had already climbed past 100. At the last break Sam, a Korean American friend, rushed into my classroom and raised his arms into the air and yelled, "Obama's our new president!!", effectively making all the Koreans and Russians very wary of us Americans.

To be fair, they had good reason to be wary. Many of us, like myself, had been abroad for the majority of the campaign season, including the climax over the last few months. Our celebration was weak at best, and constituted mainly posts on each others' facebooks and texting each other in all caps (it was only 1 pm our time after all), but we were rejoicing the fact that after all the turmoil we could only read about and missed out on, we had at least one reason to look forward to going home.

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