Vote from abroad I

There is an election in Japan at August 30th, 45th Syuugiin sousenkyo (the House of representative). I don't live in Japan, but recently I can vote from the outside of Japan. Recently means it is possible after 2000. This was only for proportional representation, but after 2007, I can vote for small electoral district at my last Japanese address. There was a judgment of this, the result is a Japanese can not vote for small electoral district is against the constitution low. I got benefit of this judgment and I thank to the people who worked on this. However, the last time I mistook the election date. I need to vote in advance since my vote will send to Japan by mail. So it goes...

I decided not to make the same mistake, I visited Japanese embassy 21st. If I made a mistake, I had still other days.

There was a sign of ``Here is election'' in front of Japanese embassy (in Japanese!). Great! But, the gatekeepers don't speak Japanese. I said, ``Ich komme hier fuer die Wahl.'' (I come here to vote.) But I am not sure this is correct, so I repeat, ``die Wahl, die Wahl (vote, vote).'' Then, the gatekeeper said, ``Haben Sie wahrscheinlich... (Do you have maybe, ..)'' I asked ``wahrscheinlich was? (maybe what?)'' However, I thought I need to show documents, so I show my passport and vote registration document. Then, he opened the gate. I realize a few seconds later, maybe he said, ``Haben Sie den Wahlschein? (Do you have the vote document)'' I never thought about this vote registration paper's name in German. Many of my friend don't believe I can not hear the L and R difference. I suddenly want to say to friends, ``See, I told you, I can't.'', but nobody was there. Oh, well.

There were five Japanese people in the voting room. The first lady explain me the overview of how to vote. There are two voting paper, here is for the proportional representation, here is for small electoral district. This is the envelope (A) to send the vote to Japan. Please write your vote registration number and sign on it... Wait a moment, then this shows I vote to whom. She continue to explain. There are four more envelopes. You need to use two envelopes (B:large, C:small) for each vote. When I wrote the vote, I put the paper into envelope C. Nothing is written on the envelope C. Then I seal the C, put it into B. I need to write my registration ID on B and sign it. Then, I put these two envelope Bs into envelope A. A is send to Japan. A and Bs are opened under observation, envelope Cs are mixed with other votes. This way, the secret of the vote is protected. Of course there could be broken, but, I trust them. (Anyway, I could tell whom I voted to to my friends.)

... will be continue.

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