Monday, May 10, 2010

Philippine Election 2010 Experience

Me and my little girl went to the elementary school to vote for the elections. We were there at exactly 8:00 A.M.

I already know where to go to. It’s imprinted in my mind like the indelible ink on a finger. Precinct 084. But then, here we go…

You have to find your name in a list. The school rooms were “reconfigured”. There is no list of names near the rooms’ doors. They are handled by people whom are not in a common ground, or common location. I went to about 6 tables, scattered about, and no Dela Cruz, Othello from San Nicolas 1, Magalang can be found. Neither that of my wife. I only found my daughter’s name in a very inconspicuous place through an officemate who also have trouble finding her name.

If there ever is a road-rage, I was having the election-rage. I am really about to quit or make a BEI (Board of Election Incompetent er… Inspector) or that PPCRV an hostage or so. I was giving up, calling it quits, and go to our roof and fix the leaks.

But then I saw this old man on a wheel chair, having the same problem as I am. A thin disappointment hinting on his face, but there was that big determination painted all over his body. Ok, thank you sir. I returned to the first table I’ve encountered. And there was this little old lady, body bent like a “C” walking in a pain induced slow walk, with a grandson or so, taking it ever so lightly, the grandson telling her that they should go home, and the “C” telling him to stay. Ok, thank you, mam.

The PPCRV dude was trying to duck me. He thought that I’m gonna give him a lashing. No I did not. I told him that I have went to all the volunteers tables, even on those which are not from our precinct but could not find my name, nor my wife. I asked him “what now?” He said that I could try the COMELEC office there on the municifio.

As I’ve said, I have my little girl with me, and we have been searching and looking for more than an hour. The poor girl was all sweat, nose-tip, shirt sticking to her body. Bought her soda and a jack-stone (she wanted the toy instead of a biscuit). We went out of the school. And as we went out we planted our foot on the concrete, slide-walked so that all those posters, campaign stuffs got piled up as we walked.

Magalang Municipal Hall, COMELEC Office, 9:20 A.M. Told a woman there about my predicament and she went to a room. Came back and gave me my precinct number, election no. (54) and that of my wife (52). And she went to this large table with names like San Pedro I, San Pedro II, and San Nicolas I. Focused on San Nicolas I, tried to look for my name and yes, yes… My name ain’t there. She went back to this room, and after another agonizing and steaming moment. She finally emerged and confirmed that I could now vote. A little discussion passed between me and her and this man who’s all jalapeno with rage. Me and my daughter went out, back to the school and was now in a room.

Got thumbmarked. Got a ballot (very long, for that) and there was this problem… one guy could not cast his ballot. It’s all about that felt tip marker making a mark on the reverse side. Another one, smudges. What the heck.

Anyway, I have voted. I was counted, thanks for that old man on a wheelchair and the old woman who looks like a “C”.

I hope that all of those who could vote DO VOTE. There will be inconvenience of course. But don’t be worthless.

…. On the GMA News coverage there were this two first timer who wanted to vote with a friend accompanying them. They went to this school to vote only to find out that they are at the wrong school. So they went to another school perhaps taking a jeepney ride just to reach it. They voted and they were just simple happy. Their names are J.R. and Larry.

You know what? They’re blind.

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