I'm back home, in my mostly comfy computer chair and pondering about the past five days. It was an amazing experience. Nicole and I were very lucky and in very good fortune since the inception of the plan to go to Washington DC back in November.
It all began with Nicole telling me that she wanted to go and then it snowballed into me being told I was considered for tickets from my congressman to booking a package flight and hotel. I thank and am extremely grateful to everyone who supported us in going and I am humbled by the experience that I received while attending.
Usually I have something witty to say or some sort of quip, but for this post all I have is a warm heart to pour out in gratitude. Thank you and goodnight.
The big day arrived! We got up and out about 7:30am and hit the metro. The station near the hotel wasn't bad, there were just a few more people there than usual. As we got closer to the capitol, the cars got super full and people were packed like sardines.
When we got off the metro about 8am there was already a sea of people crowding the streets of the capitol. We realized we had to walk all the way around the capitol to get to our entrance. We found a line to our entrance and followed it all the way around a block to the end. When we got into line, we met a red capped volunteer (all the volunteers wore special red caps to stand out) and he said that the block wrapping line was bogus and led to nowhere. He led us and a few hundred other people to the actual entrance and we were in in under an hour (very much unlike the people who had arrived at 4am and created a bogus line).
We were two hours early and found a spot to sit and relax for a bit. About 10-10:30am the US Marine band began to play and slightly entertain the 2million+ crowd. Important political figure heads began to file out of the capitol around 11am. The crowd cheered for Jimmy Carter and some booed for Bush Sr. and everyone cheered again for the Clintons and then many booed again for Bush Jr. When the Obama family emerged on the jumbotrons, the crowd went crazy. The (positive) mob mentality was humongous.
The ceremony was very straight forward. very much like all the other swearing in ceremonies that I've seen before, but Obama's speech was very interesting. He spoke with humility, humbleness and a very prepared mentality for the very difficult job ahead of him. The full transcript of his speech is on the Huffington Post. I highly recommend reading it over. The actual event was very emotional and reading his words over again is well worth it: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/01/20/president-obamas-inaugura_n_159370.html
Few of my pictures from yesterday turned out and the only pictures I ended up uploading to flickr are of a little photo shoot Nicole and I did while waiting for the event to begin. None of my pictures of the jumbotrons turned out nor was I happy with my photos of the crowds. Here's the slim pickings from yesterday:
I'm posting this evening because we're going to have a very early morning tomorrow.
Today was pretty short and sweet. We went out to the Longworth House Office Building to pick up the tickets for the inauguration. Then later we went to a Safeway to get food and sustenance for the long day ahead.
We are once again updating from a location with free internet.
Yesterday we got a late start due to not being adjusted to the east coast time. After we were all ready, we went out to the National Mall. We checked out a few museums and all the news agencies setting up out there.
Then we met up with Catherine again and headed out to dinner. We intended on going to a pizza place called 2 Amys, but they were full up so we went to a Mexican restaurant called Cactus Cantina.
Today we're heading back out to the National Mall for the free concert. Bono, Springsteen and Shakira are slated to be there. Very exciting.
We don't have internet in our hotel like I thought we would, so these updates won't be as frequent as I had hoped.
Yesterday was pretty awesome. We arrived in DC around 4pm (East coast time) and got to our hotel via Super Shuttle around 6. There was a guy riding on our shuttle who lived way out in the DC boonies and added a half hour to the ride.
After we settled, we met up with Catherine for her birthday at Cafe Ole, a Mediterranean cafe for dinner. Then we followed her and her friends to American University for a little tour and a little birthday cake.
Today we're walking around the National Mall checking out the Smithsonian museums. I'll get around to editing the video and uploading the pictures later tonight or sometime tomorrow morning.
Tomorrow we're going back out to the National Mall by the Lincoln Memorial to hopefully see Bono, Bruce Springsteen and Shakira.
Follow Nicole and I on Twitter: twitter.com/kylelowe twitter.com/nicolesuzanne