Following the Election from Africa

My homemade electoral map-post-it notes galore!

My homemade electoral map-post-it notes galore!

PCVs care about elections, and even though we are halfway around the world, we will mail in those absentee ballots no matter how many hours we have to spend on a sweltering bush taxi. Following the election can be hard because we don’t live in the lap of technological luxury (usually *cough cough* Posh Corps *cough cough*). Even with my Blackberry, I frequently lose a signal and it becomes a purple paperweight. But I had to have a way to keep up with the happenings on election day. I am a political science major after all.

So here was the game plan: Wake up every hour starting at 2am on Wednesday to check on results, and I ended up awake by 3am, with coffee by 4am. I had intended to use my shortwave radio, but forgot about it until 6am or so. But at 4am, my sister was feeding me live updates via whatsapp, and I was constantly refreshing electoral college maps. By about 5am, I was antsy, so I made my own electoral map, which I kept updating. I BBM’d other PCVs who were awake and as anxious for it to be over as I was. I kept an eye on twitter, where major news tends to break first, and around 6am, I saw the “twitterstorm” announcing Obama’s relection. Around that time I turned on my radio and found “Voices of America” loud and clear, and listened to their broadcast as I update electoral counts on my map again, reflecting Obama’s win.

In what sane world does someone decide to make an electoral map between 4-5am, I don’t know. But I live in the Peace Corps world, which is NOT really sane.

Iowa! Before it was called.

Iowa! Before it was called.


About Jen Lamos

Christ follower. Writer. Permaculturist. RPCV. Photographer. Gardener. Keeper of Chickens. Daughter of God.

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