We had a State election here yesterday (Saturday). I’m on the roll and had received my letter, so off I went just after lunch. It was a quiet time of the day, which was what I’d hoped for. Easy parking by the school gates which were festooned with placards and banners beseeching last-minute undecided voters.
I’d thought carefully and listened to much during the campaign but I didn’t really lock in my choice until I was driving to the school.
As I approached the party faithful I felt as if my parents were with me. Dad reminding me ‘that men died on the beaches of Gallipoli…’ so that I might have the freedom to vote in secret. Mum distraught by the atrocious waste that are how to vote cards. I patiently explained to the 2 main parties diligent workers that I did not want the papers they thrust at me. I had come prepared and I am opposed to all the trees being felled, damage to the ozone layer and careless foot-printing that are how to vote cards. One party joined me in agreement and asked me to write to – well, I forget where. Maybe it was the electoral office?
I made my way to the large shed hall. Now made somewhat obsolete by the KRudd dollars Of yesteryear: a new school hall stands majestically to the rear, a testament to the theory that the more you spend the more you will boost the economy ensuring we will escape the GFC. Which we did, to some extent. KRudd did not, but that is, as they say another story.
The electoral-roll lady located my name on said roll asking ‘Did you bring your letter?’ and admonishing me to  ‘keep it love, there is a Council election in 4 weeks’.  I in turn enquired of her as to where the sausage sizzle was? And the cake stall? She shook her head ‘none this year love’ she replied.
I voted.
On the way out I stopped by the two men that were sprawled on camping chairs under a shady tree, with a card table between them. This table was stacked high with how to vote cards. Addressing the men I said ‘I don’t feel like I have voted; I feel robbed with no sausage sizzle or cake stall’. They nodded sagely in agreement and then warmed to the subject. We discussed how all it takes to run a sausage sizzle is a call to the local butcher for 300 snags, to be collected late Friday afternoon, delivered would be better.  Zip down to the local supermarket and buy a few 2 litre bottles of tomato sauce and 500 hundred home-brand paper serviettes. Make a bunch of phone calls to round-up the barbies, and volunteers etc. And bobs your uncle you’ve got an election day fund-raising sausage sizzle. Tradition is maintained. A cake stall just requires more phone calls, and Shirley’s mother being home all day for the drop offs.
Seems un Australian not to have one.Or both.
Yes the trouble with absolute power is absolutely corrupts.
The Government suffered such a tsunami of rejection by the electorate they now have so few numbers they technically may not even qualify as a party. The new Government with its new leader,who has never even been in the Parliament before,now has a free hand. Time will tell if we regret the choices we made. The missing sausage sizzle may yet be a portent of things to come….