Gentle readers! Am I out of balance or are we living on a tilt-a-whirl? For some reason, it seems our lovely, big, blue marble has gone off its axis and our planet no longer revolves in the same dependable orbit.

Our landscapes are covered with wildfires and earthquakes, hurricanes and the muck of the presidential elections and humans shooting humans, for no good reason or any reason at all - I’m sorry readers, but my mind has gone askew.

So at any rate, I did not know what a “Covid-19 Halloween” would look like. We’ve all been wearing masks - so it seems rather anticlimactic.

Social distancing and trick or treat didn’t seem possible.

The rest of the year, good children would never ring your doorbell and demand treats. It’s just this one night -pandemic or not.

I didn’t know how many kids I should brace for. Would people go out or would people stay in? Last year, my first in my new-old house, I handed out 100 treats and then quietly turned off the porch light. But, this year - Halloween was off and on, then finally it was back on. So I bought about the same number of treats - choosing granola bars, so I wouldn’t end up with a big supply of chocolate candy left over for myself to devour.

But, it was very busy. I had about the same number of visitors - but trick or treating was set for 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. and I ran out at 4:30 p.m. and they were still coming. It was crazy - every kid was accompanied by four to six or more adults. Seems everyone needed to get out into their own neighborhoods and wave and shout.

I sat on my front porch in a rocking chair, covered with a blanket. Ivy Claire, my trusty terrier, curled up on my lap and kept looking up and down the street. A few children came up and patted her head and if dogs can smile - she was smiling.

We had about four trick or treating dogs who came by and were given Milk Bones. I was ready with the treats for those pups who were being good sports about their costumes.

There were many kids who were cops this year, only two cowboys, superheroes galore and of course numerous princesses. I told two princesses who swanned up my sidewalk that they looked fabulous and they said, “Yes, we do.”

Now we’re on to an even odder event. The presidential election. I am so happy that it will be the end of the countless calls and my mailbox being stuffed with flyers. By the time you read this, the decision will be made. I hope I won’t have to move to Canada.

I wish we were back in the day when our local clerks counted the ballots (which had been marked with an X with a No. 5 pencil) by hand and then called the tally to the appropriate county seat with the results.

The clerks I knew worked the polls as a part of their contribution to democracy. No foreign interferences to worry about, no scams or blaming and extending and recounting etc. etc. When the polls closed. The polls closed.

Back in the day when I worked as a reporter, I would sometimes keep track of the local votes for the Associated Press. There weren't any “Exit Polls” declaring a winner. I think sometimes those circumvented many voters from feeling their vote counted. Things were purer then and far more honest.

Voting is freedom. Going into the old voting booths that were stored in the town garage alongside the snow plow and the stacks of folding chairs and pulling that frayed cloth curtain behind you - well it was pretty hard to cheat and nobody really wanted to.

But, that was back when we were on our axis.

(Copyright © 2020 APG Media)

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