(Image: Private Media)

It’s a rare, sunny Saturday morning at a shabby community centre in the electorate of Mackellar and early voters have scored the trifecta. They’re shopping across the road at the bustling Warriewood mall, arriving in droves to do their democratic duty while watching the kids play soccer in the muddy adjoining fields.  

This is the busiest pre-polling station on Sydney's Northern Beaches, expecting 22,000 voters through the doors before it’s all on in earnest next week (although numbers have been way down. It’s the weather. It’s been vile).

The election cosplay in the car park is everything you’d imagine. Liberal, independent, Greens and UAP in club colours -- all jostling for hearts and minds. Prams and strollers with small kids. Even smaller dogs in arms. And everyone whispering: “How do you think it’s going?”