Tuesday, February 17, 2009


I know I've been a bad blogger lately, and there's no good excuse for it, so I'm going to make an effort to catch up in the next few days... First up, Inauguration Weekend!

The week before Inauguration, Mom and Dad decided that they wanted to come down and join in the festivities... we didn't have any big plans or tickets to anything good (because I simply thought about it too late), but we didn't let that stop us from going!

We went down to the Inauguration Concert at the Lincoln Memorial on Sunday. Somehow we were able to metro right down to Farragut North, follow the flow of people onto the mall, and somehow ended up getting through the security gates and into the actual concert area... which apparently was quite difficult as many of our friends were stuck out on the mall!

There were some definite goosebumps as the Obamas were introduced... it was all so very cool! The concert was great and luckily we had layered up enough to keep warm!

And then came Inauguration Day... Joe Sr. decided to join us, so we all met at my house at 4am to head over to the Metro. We hit a bit of traffic getting into the metro station, but once we got in and parked, we were lucky enough to get on an empty train and snag some seats! We were downtown by 6:15 and came out of the metro station to the chaos... the vendors were already out and people were trying to figure out which gates to get to! The coolest part of the early AM was that there were helicopters with spotlights circling the area... and it totally felt like a scene from Batman or a fun action movie!

Our big glitch of the day was the water main break at the security gate we needed to get through. We got in the line/crowd at 6:30am and anxiously waited for the gates to open at 7. Well, 7am came and went, 8am came and went, and finally a gate opened at 8:30 and the crowd (which at that point filled 4 blocks of space) pushed forward. We were about 20 feet away from the gate for the next 2 hours, but nobody was getting through. It was getting a little hairy with the pushing and we literally got scared for our safety and decided to turn back and try to get in another way. We later found out that they never fully opened the gate due to a water main break.

I begged and pleaded at the Residence Entrance to my building (which we're never allowed to enter through) and explained our story to the security guards and secret service... I think they got tired of looking at me (clearly, I wasn't going anywhere) and let us sneak through! Joe Sr. also pointed out that somehow we got through but Former VA Governor Allen was turned away at the door (his office is in my building)!

Once we were in my office, we had a great view of Pennsylvania Ave and ended up having easy access to the parade route! The Secret Service was very accomodating and let us out without too much trouble... To Daddy's sheer joy, Ann Curry of the Today show was set up in front of my building! Because the aforementioned gate never opened, people couldn't get to our area of the parade route and we were able to get only a few rows back from the street (without having to wait in the cold all day)!

...and then they got out of the Limo!! Joe got a few great shots of the Obamas as they walked right by us!!

It was worth the chaos and cold... We made it... we were there... and couldn't be happier about it!

Here's the slideshow of all of our photos...

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