Last night I went to visit some old friends on the even further west side of Chicago in the Austin neighborhood. Grandma Goldie (which is what we called her when she lived two houses down from us) and Tariana and Laquan (her great grandchildren whom she is raising) were watching the election coverage when I arrived. Goldie and I caught up on things and I brought Laquan a belated 11 y/o birthday gift. OK, that's not true. I just gave him what cash I had in my purse but it made him happy.
These kids are very dear to me because when Goldie lived by us for a year, they were at our house daily. Sammy calls him "Matwan" instead of "Laquan", but he was very sad the day his big buddy moved out of the neighborhood. Tariana is this cute funny girl who, like Claire, draws about 100 pictures a day.
Goldie isn't in great health, as she has diabetes and smokes about 2 packs of cigarettes a day. But, after raising about 11 of her own children alone, as well as at least 6 or 7 of her granchildren and great grandchildren, can you blame her? The woman is tired at 74 years old...but still asks me when we're going to go out to the clubs again. Someday Goldie, but I can't keep up with you. The woman wants to stay out all night!
Well, anyway, as we were sitting there, the election was announced and suddenly the Austin neighborhood lit up. I heard a few gunshots going up in the air (I hope) and everyone rushed out into the streets. I left, thinking I'd better get going before it got too crazy, but I tried to film some of the chaos as I drove. It's a really bad video, since I was driving and dodging people, but you'll get the idea.
I have to admit, that although I have my reservations about Barack, it was very hard to not get swept up in the emotion of the whole thing! I'm not kidding you...children were out in the streets singing and dancing and old people were crying and hugging each other. Horns were blaring and everyone was smiling and I even heard an old guy, who was pushing a shopping cart down the street, singing Amazing Grace. No reigning it in going on at all!
And sweet Tariana handed me this picture as I left her house which is her standing next to the White House. She says it's because she's going to be the first black GIRL to be the President. More power to you Tariana.
Well, since I'm living with Mr. Libertarian/Consitutional Party Man , we weren't neccessarily throwing an Obama party at our house, but I told the kids about the election this morning, and Claire said "Yeah, that's who I thought was going to win..." Haha. What? She didn't even know the names of candidates until yesterday, but with all the signs in our neighborhood, she must have just guessed that he was favored, around here at least. Well, let's see what happens!
What I really wish I could have gotten a video of was me trying to vote. Matt thought it would be educational to bring the children with us, but what that meant was that Claire really wanted to help me connect the lines on my ballot, so I'm standing there trying to help her mark my ballot, while Sammy is laying underneath our desk on his back, kicking the underneath of it while I'm trying to vote. Lovely. Of course Matt is over there by himself enjoying participating in this civic duty, while I'm mumbling: "Matthew...can you get your son?!" Now that would have been a good video, don't you think?
Don't worry about us...marriage counseling starts next week. Haha. But more about that later.