Obama Inaugurama – Down and Dirty Version, Part II

13 Feb 2009 12:28 am
Posted by: Krista

Sorry again for the delay in posting the rest of this. We’ve moved to downtown Phoenix and have been busy packing/unpacking one house, and I started packing our Casa Grande house. I have way too much stuff and need to have a yard sale to offload a lifetime of collecting. Anyway…the bonus for the long wait is…pictures! You can see it in action for yourself.

If you missed the first post, catch up with part I.

January 20, 2009: Got up at 5:30am to get ready. Justin woke up a bit after me. Took us a while to get geared up. I had so many layers on, I could barely move. Tights, long johns, jeans, two sweaters, two long sleeve shirts, two sets of ear warmers, warm hat, two pairs of gloves, long jacket. Seriously, I looked odd, but I was hoping to stay warm.

Got to the metro station at Vienna around 7am. Got on the metro fairly quickly, but it took an hour and a half to get to our station. We stopped on the tracks for 30 to 45 minutes at one point. We had seats, so I took a nap while we waited.

Exited the metro after waiting in a long line to do so and headed towards the silver gate.

View of the crowd behind us:


crowd_behind

View of the crowd ahead of us:


crowd_ahead

We got off the metro around 9:30, and it took us over two hours to get through the Silver gate. The organization and crowd control was non-existent. The street was wide open, and they were funneling everyone through a small area, and it took forever to get through. We kept pushing our way through until we finally made it. The nice thing about it was it kept us relatively warm to be stuck in the crowd.

When we got to security, there were dozens of security checkpoints to choose from, and they were almost all empty. It took us all of a minute to get checked out before they let us through. There were a lot of people, but there was a huge section that had lots of room, so we headed there.

View of the crowd behind the Silver ticket area:


view_behind

View in front of us from the Silver ticket area:


view_ahead

As you can see, the view wasn’t the closest, but we were so happy to get through and to be there. After we parted from the rest of the crowd, the cold really started to hit. It was hard to type on the BlackBerry, but I did my best to keep up with my tweets.

Happy inauguration-goers:


happyandfreezing

The ceremony itself took a long time to get started. They slowly announced all the VIPs. Everyone booed Bush, and people started singing, “Na na na na, na na na na, hey hey, good bye!”, which was kind of cool.

The happy party bit started when Biden was introduced. Everyone was cheering for him. Then Obama was introduced, and everyone went crazy. When Roberts fumbled Obama’s swearing in, Justin and I caught it and thought Obama had messed up. We were relieved when we found out it was Roberts who’d messed up. I mean, what a time to fumble, right? After Obama’s swearing in, people were crying and cheering. I was crying myself. It felt so good to have Obama in the House.

People slowly started leaving, but mostly, people were meandering and moving closer towards the reflecting pool to take more pictures. People were tentative at first, but then they got adventurous and started walking across the ice in the reflecting pool. It took a little while, but eventually someone broke it and water was pooling over it by the time we left.

People walking across reflecting pool:


ice

We still had some action going on with the big screens and saw the Obamas saying good-bye to the Bushes. They got into a helicopter, and then we started looking for it in the sky. It was great to see them go.

Bye, bye Bush-y:


byebyebushy

We knew it was going to be tough getting back to my friend’s house, so we walked around for a bit. It was getting colder and colder, so we headed towards one of the museums and hung out there for a couple of hours before trying for the metro.

We tried to get on the closest metro, but the line was wrapped around the block, so we headed to the next one. The line for that one was super long, too, so we tried the next. The line for the third one wasn’t too bad, and I was so exhausted, I couldn’t think of trying to make it to another metro. It didn’t take long to get through the line, and soon enough, we were on the metro. And because we had walked out to an earlier stop, we were able to get seats. It took us a couple of hours to make our way back to Falls Church, but we made it!

I was exhausted and know I looked it. But we had something for dinner and got gussied up to go to the Arizona Ball anyway. It was worth it! A totally different crowd from the Pederson event, but there was lots of food, lots of drinks, and it wasn’t so crowded we couldn’t move.

Best friends at the Arizona Ball:


jme_krista

Here’s my other best friend:


azball_jandk

We danced, we talked, we drank (cranberry juice for me!). We caught up with Mark and Donna, George Arredondo from Coolidge, some of my Emerge Arizona cohorts, Jim Walsh (Pinal County Attorney) and his wife dancing to rap, Corporation Commissioner Paul Newman, who I really enjoyed talking to, and various and sundry others. We didn’t have VIP tickets, so we only briefly saw Sinema, Ann Kirkpatrick, and others going to and from the VIP room. It kind of sucked that the VIP area was so off-limits. We didn’t get a chance to talk to some of the people. But overall, it was a great ball and a lot of fun.

So, that was the quick summary of my inauguration experience. It was worth every minute. Here are a couple of bonus pictures from earlier in the week:

Picking up tickets from Congresswoman Kirkpatrick’s office:


outside_kirkpatrick_office

Setting up for the inauguration:


settingup

The scenery:


thescenery

And more:


thesceneryii

Sizing up the inauguration location:


jumbotron

Democratic Divas represent:


demdivas

Mr. Mitchell, Congressman Mitchell, Krista, and Justin at the Pederson party:


mitchells

Tickets to the Arizona ball:


azball_tickets

1 Comment(s)

  1. Comment by naomi on February 13, 2009 9:15 am

    I love these. Thank you for sharing history!

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