Just a pretty rose or the perfect compromise between two colours?
Why the 'Mother of all elections'? For three reasons:
1.we had to vote for the European, National (Federal) and Regional (in my case Flemish) governments,
2. the new 'governments' will be 'in the saddle' for five years, instead of four, a big change!
3. the outcome of the 'clash between the titans' has never before been so unpredictable, leaving the population completely in the dark on what the next five years will bring.
I set out earlier than usual in order to avoid the crowds. What a mistake to make! (Remember this quote? :)) The weather being what it is - warm and sunny and the last day before we get more rain and wind - I guess a lot of people wanted to perform their civic duty (voting is compulsary in Belgium) before seeking some leisure at the coast or in the countryside.
When I arrived, the queues indicated a wait of well over 15 minutes. Moreover, this time I had to queue twice. Once for myself and once for my mother who, physically unable to go to the poll offices herself, had given me a mandate to vote in her name ... with strict and detailed instructions about whom to vote for. As we don't have the same last name, my mother and I don't vote in the same bureau. Mine is 123, hers 122. The queue at number 123 seemed shorter than 122's, so I joined the first one. Although shorter, it turned out to move slower than 122. But by the time I had realized that, it was too late to change.
By the time I had finished my part of the duty, the queue at 122 had doubled in size. In fact, I almost had to step outside again to join it. All in all it took me just under an hour to complete my double mission.
On my way to the car a young woman holding an exit poll clipboard approached me. "Will you tell me who you voted for?" she kindly inquired. "No" I replied, "But I will tell you who I didn't vote for." She penciled down my answer and wished me a pleasant Sunday!
Voting will be over at 4 p.m. The first exit polls are expected by half past 3 p.m. Can't wait ... or can I?