January 21, 2013
Today I experienced history. I awoke early this morning and took a somewhat crowded Metro toward the National Mall. As my roommate and I wandered trying to find the best place to view the parade and hear the Inaugural Ceremony, we happened upon a barricaded street with multiple law enforcement agencies, most notably the Secret Service. Just down the block, President Obama was attending mass before being sworn in! We waited about 45 minutes, chatting with the nice police officers. Finally, Obama and his entourage exited the church, causing cheers from the many onlookers.
After consulting with the officers, we headed to a public entrance of the parade route. Although the tickets we were promised fell through, we braved the cold to watch the Presidential motorcade whiz by and hear the ceremony with thousands of other Americans. The pomp and circumstance was not lost on anyone in the crowd, with multiple shouts of, “Amen!” during the inaugural address. James Taylor, Kelly Clarkson and Beyonce were all well received. The oaths were also administered correctly this time, quite a relief from four years ago!
Although we had a good view of the parade route, it was not scheduled to start for hours after the ceremony, and numb toes and fingers called us back to our apartment. We decided we had the experience we wanted and could watch the Obamas strut their stuff from our couch. By doing this, we also beat the half-million other Americans on the Metro, even with a pit stop at Starbucks. As I thawed out in our toasty apartment, I soaked in the experience I had today, filing away these historical experiences.