This was a week that made me proud to be an American. Nothing like getting up at 3:30 a.m. to get to the polls by 5 a.m. at Blythe Park School and Precinct 8. 

Luckily I am a morning person, so it’s a good thing and good for the voters, although when the alarm goes off I wonder why I’m still doing this election judge gig. But, it is an honor in many ways.

By the time the voters arrive — and there was a line — we were ready to go, having set up the night before. However, a glitch happened immediately when the card activator decided not to work. Plan B went into effect and voters had to use paper ballots, after giving them the spiel on how to do it and assuring them there were no hanging chads to concern themselves about. 

We have many loyal voters in Precinct 8, who wait until Election Day to vote because they like the experience at the polls. Hey, where else can you exercise your right to vote, get a sticker, candy and see your neighbors and friends. 

The “I voted” stickers, are a hot commodity and people do want them almost as much as I wanted to get holy cards from Sr. Augustine in first grade. Many took advantage of early voting, but we still had a crowd. 

We also had many people taking advantage of being able to register to vote. But, next time, come a little earlier and not right before the polls close, please.

We have a good group of judges at Precinct 8 and there’s nothing like having a teenager as a judge when it comes to computers. We had a student from Riverside-Brookfield High School, so thanks to social studies teacher John Fields. 

I think we could show Florida how to do it.

Veterans Day musings: My husband, Joe, is an Air Force veteran who attended RBHS’ annual Veterans Day program on Friday. After a moving assembly with all students present, he went to a classroom to speak of his experience in the service. 

As a Russian linguist in Japan and having tracked the first Russian woman in space, his story is interesting. On Monday, the official holiday (since Nov. 11 fell on Sunday this year), we over to Brook Park School where granddaughter McKenna is a student for a short program.

Most schools do show veterans appreciation with programs that also let students know the impact veterans have made on their lives. I will admit I did get a bit teary eyed at both programs.

This week I was proud to be an American, but then I always am. Thank you, vets and voters.