Thursday, August 11, 2011
Family and election
It was a special Sunday lunch.
For the first time in a long time, our entire family gathered around the dining room table for a meal.
Saturday had been a long-anticipated day. We drove to the Memphis International Airport and picked up Emma, who returned from a two-month stay as a volunteer with Mission Arlington (Texas).
I think it’s the longest we’ve ever gone without seeing her. And I can’t recall ever being so happy to see someone – when we got that first glimpse of her at the airport terminal.
I had sent a text to her earlier that morning, when she was waiting at the Houston, Texas, airport. It basically said, “I can’t wait for a hug.”
Our University of Southern Mississippi student, who will be a junior this fall, had a terrific summer. We stopped and ate lunch at Arby’s at the airport and she could not wait to show us photos of some of the children she worked with during her mission work.
She did a great work this summer and grew spiritually.
And she sweated a lot. It averaged about 110 degrees in Texas with no rain in a long time.
As a dad, I’m extremely proud of her, and I’m thankful we will have a few days together before we move her back to USM on August 17.
It was indeed a relaxing weekend after a week that included an 18-hour work day due to the Primary Election August 2.
Elections are stressful and tiring at the newspaper, but for me, personally, they’re loads of fun, too.
Polls closed at 7 p.m. Tuesday of last week. I told Sue (Watson, staff writer) that we’d go over to the courthouse about 8 p.m., but I couldn’t wait that long.
After going home to grab a bite to eat, I returned to the office and walked over to the courthouse at 7:30 p.m.
The election-night crew was already gathered – organized and ready for the precinct boxes to start rolling in.
It was basically a smooth night – capping off an election day with few problems.
All the precincts were in and totaled by around 10 p.m. and then came the slower process of tabulating the absentee and curbside votes. It was all wrapped up in the 11:30 p.m. range.
With the help of Sue, my wife Pam and proofreader Beth Breithaupt we had the story finished by about 12:30 a.m. Wednesday.
I left the office about 1:30 a.m. – after saving the two pages that included election results and sending them electronically to Oxford for printing.
Thanks to all who responded positively to our election coverage both Tuesday night and after the newspaper hit the streets Wednesday.
Pam and I consistently posted updates on the election returns through the newspaper’s Facebook page and it was obviously appreciated by the Marshall Countians who have access to the Internet.
For final election totals, including precinct by precinct, go to the website, www.southreporter.com.
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