Every day I wake up, sweep my patio, and head over to my neighbor’s house to share some coffee sweetened like candy. We chat about baseball, ask our friend how his cows are doing, and make jokes about how a gringa loves living in an Afro community so much.
But on voting day our routine changed.
“Vamos a votar Lanis!” (“Let’s go vote Lanis” – for some reason they add an “s” to my name no matter how much I insist that there isn’t one.)
I downed my coffee and we headed out to the school. Each person we passed received the same greeting:
“Vamos a votar!” “Let’s go vote!”
Soon we had become a parade of citizens (and a gringa) headed to vote together.
Sometimes it is hard to believe that change is possible in a country riddled with so much violence, corruption and division, but regardless, it was great to be walking through town with people firm in their beliefs and ready to use the power of their vote to make a difference.
Why were they voting?
No matter what the reason, it was a special experience to march through town with a group of Colombians exercising their right to vote in order to change their country for the best.
Now we have to wait and see how these votes determine the future of the country, the future of our communities, and our future as community supporters.