Tuesday, January 27, 2009
After getting up at quarter to four and putting on two tee shirts two long sleeve thermal shirts, Icelandic wool sweater and scarf, two pairs of long johns, a pair of jeans, two pair of socks, hiking boots, and heavy winter I was ready to go to the Inauguration of Barak Obama.
I was lucky enough to find a place to crash in Fairfax VA Monday night. So I was only 15 minutes from a metro station. Amazingly I arrived at the metro the same time my friends did who were coming up from their hotel room in Richmond VA, they left Richmond at 2:30 am. So we were at the Vienna/Fairfax metro by 4:30am+- and kicked off the train by the second stop. Doors wouldn’t shut so they kicked everyone off the train not just us. We caught the next train without much incident. The train was packed as tight as anyone could stand. Actually it was tighter than my traveling companions could stand so we got off earlier than we had planed. Our early exit put us on the wrong side of the security check point for the parade rout. We had to walk around about 13 blocks just to get to the National Mall, about a block west of the Washington Monument.
On our walk around the parade rout we found a dinner that was open and got some nourishment for the long cold day ahead. So we walked the three blocks back to get on the west side of the parade rout and headed south down 18th street with a couple hundred other people. Despite the early hour everyone was in good spirits; a mood that would continue the rest of the day.
The sky was a dark blue, the sun was not up but it had started to push the black out of the sky. By the time we got to the mall the sky had lightened and the sun was coming up lighting up the clouds and the cold ground of the National Mall.
I knew I wouldn’t get close enough to the capitol to get any shots of the swearing in of Obama so I had decided to get shots of the people in the crowd; the citizens that had come from all over this country to be in DC on this day. Some of us wanted to witness history and for some I am sure it was a day they never thought they would see in their life time.
Obama campaigned on the idea of “Change”, as I see the change was twofold, the first change was the politics of old. I am as tired of the old politics as anyone but the other “Change” has been needed even longer; the election of an African American to the presidency of the United States of America. Over two hundred years after this “free” country was established and fifty four years after Brown vs. Board of Education decision a black man has been elected president. I don’t think anyone should have been elected for the sole fact of the color of their skin. I think Obama is a very qualified politician. This change didn’t start when Barak was elected or even when he was nominated. It started long ago in the Civil Rights and other struggles of minorities and has finally reached the White House. Not to say the struggle is over but this is a good sign that true change is happening.
It is amazing to think some of the people standing on the mall that day went to segregate schools and had to use segregated waiting rooms, eating establishments and so on. To think that in a person’s life time; they have been told that they are second class citizens do to the color of their skin and to see someone with the same skin become President of the United States of America, that is change.
As a side note: It bugs me that spell check doesn't know who the president is.
Thursday, January 15, 2009
Well I am going to head up to DC for the Inauguration of Barack Obama. I am going to try to do some mobile posts from my phone (with pictures hopefully). We will have to see how clogged the networks get. Once I get back I will be posting photo's from my "real" camera. I am still debating going up Sunday to see the show at the Lincoln Memorial. I have a feeling it will be the only time I will get to see Bruce Springsteen live. More to come on the inaugural travels.