I have been the Conservative candidate for the Parliamentary constituency of Wealden for the last 15 months, and it is with a mixture of relief, excitement and some trepidation that the finish line of this campaigning marathon approaches. There is no let up in the schedule of meetings with time-pressed farmers, visits to inspirational local charities and delivering tub thumping speeches at fundraising events.
A numbers game
But the closer we get to polling day, the more it's the conversations on the doorstep that matter. That means hours of canvassing in Wealden and in neighbouring constituencies which we need to win to secure a majority Conservative government.
This daily schedule would be draining were it not for the ever increasing support from fresh enthusiastic volunteers joining the team, providing the energy and zeal needed to get me over the line on 7 May.
Candidates are judged on how many doors they've knocked on, the variety of leaflets delivered and the number of telephone calls dialled. I attended the vital Wealden Conservative Association Annual General Meeting, where my local members and activists approved my election campaign plan and volunteered to sign and seal my election nomination papers.
The nomination process requires local residents to act as proposers, seconders and assenters which is a political minefield in itself, as the number of supporters wanting to sign my papers was far more than allowed.
Lost in the process
One of the reasons I wanted to run for public office was to help shape the debate over the future of our country. Not that a candidate has much scope to engage in that discussion so close to the election, when the process of politics takes up so much time.
Nationally, the British press and political commentators fret over opinion polls, election strategy, post-election speculation and their latest obsession, TV leaders' debates. I have to tell them none of that registers on the doorsteps where there is a degree of incredulity that the media and political elites miss the subjects that matter to people's everyday lives.
In under two months the people will get to pass judgment. Yes I hope I win, but let's hope democracy is the winner too.