Today is election day. And this is one election that really has had me glued to the screen. So much so that I've been watching the Campaign Show on BBC instead of Desperate Housewives or Glee. Now that is saying something.
Even my 6 and 4 year old know all about it and can name the leaders of the 3 main parties. My eldest is in favour of Cameron because he had a friend called Cameron once and he thinks he looks like a nice chap. My youngest prefers the Lib Dems on account of the fact that he likes the colour yellow. As for me, I'm one of the undecided but think I know which way I'm going to go, although I'm not utterly convinced by any of them.
However, as much as the UK thinks this is an exciting election, it pales into significance when compared to the first time I could ever vote.
It happed on 17 March 1992. I was at last old enough to vote and I am so pleased that my first vote was for something so incredibly meaningful. This wasn't an election. It was a referendum. The choice was simple: Vote Yes or No.
Voting Yes meant ending apartheid in South Africa. Voting No meant staying with the status quo. Never had the choice been quite so simple. Never had votes counted quite so much. Never had the queues been longer at polling stations. Never had an outcome been quite so important.
I clearly remember that day and being moved to tears that I was getting a say in how the country would change. And change it did. It's hard to believe that Apartheid was such a recent occurrence that I was able to vote to end it (or maybe it simply means I'm old) but the excitement of that voting day will stay with me forever.
While today might not have quite such life altering consequences, it's just as important to go vote. Because voting is a priviledge. So use it.