inauguration photos

I've just finished posting five sets of photos (see right hand menu) from the inauguration and our visit to the capitol, the lincoln memorial concert, and the parties we attended.  I'm a bit disappointed with the quality of the shots--I should get a better camera, and I have to admit that it was too cold to have my gloves off for very long.  But it seems that a lot of other people took pictures...(understatement of the year)...so I'll have to rely on them for prettier images.  If you haven't seen it yet, you will want to check out the "gigapan" site, which has a huge, zoom-able panoramic shot of the inauguration and the crowd.  The satellite pictures are also very, very cool.  You can see how the crowds are clustered around the jumbotrons all the way back to the Washington Monument.

It was an amazing experience, and Anne and I are so thankful that we were able to go to DC and mark this important and historic occasion.  After eight years of grumbling to myself, and shouting at the tv news, it's really a new day.  At the Huffington Post party, Sting came out and sang "Brand New Day," after remarking that he originally wrote the song at the turn of the millennium, and that it was born out of a sense of optimism about the future.  Then he said, "I was about 8 years too early...it had to get so much worse before it could get better."  Let's hope we're on the right path now.

Here's video from the Huffington Post party performances:  will.i.am, sheryl crow, and sting.  And here's "red carpet" pics of a number of the celebrities at the party...we also saw Ron Howard and a bunch of democratic and media figures.  I geeked out on seeing Chris Hayes, of the Nation magazine, in line--he was a bit surprised, I think, to see himself on one of the TVs that line the walls of the Newseum, as they were broadcasting a segment from Countdown with Keith Olbermann on which he had appeared.  We were really excited to see and talk with Mark Green on the metro, and to find that we were all going to the same party!  And to run across Howard Dean as he was making his way, carrying his tux, toward the Newseum.  Don King was probably the most unlikely celebrity spotting...

It's gratifying to think about the fact that a few million people descended into such a small geographical area and withstood unbelievable cold and crowds, for hours and hours, all without a single arrest...Like the primaries and the election, this has given me more faith in the American people, our ability to help one another, our desire to participate in our government...I have to say, the near-silence during the Swearing-In Ceremony was astounding.  There was a real sense of reverence and respect, and that is what remains striking, now, only ten days, or perhaps a lifetime, later.



resuming broadcasting

image2123438570.jpgIt was just too cold, and I could hardly take photos, never mind type out updates...epic liveblog fail.

But it was an amazing day, from the moment the alarm woke me up and I realized that it was finally Jan 20. Who needs sleep? Well, actually, I do...

We made our way thru the bus and subway, which took a long time because the metro was flooded with people and the train traffic was backed up...left the house at 5:15, and finally got down to the south side of the mall around 6:45. Then there was the waiting by the "Silver Gate," mentioned below. We got into our ticket area by about 8, and then there was the long, hunkered-down era, involving much bundling, blanket sharing, and wide eyed awe that it just did not seem to warm up. We stayed focused on the crowds, their happiness and their diversity, and, finally,the San Francisco Boys and Girls Choirs started singing. The huddled masses jumped up, jumped around, and cheered on the children. The light was getting brighter, even if it did not grow warmer...and everyone was just thrilling with anticipation...

in the silver section

image1478940541.jpgYay! We are here shivering on the ground but the sun is coming out and we hope the feetwarmers will kick in soon. Anne was reminiscing about the last time we got up this early for Barack: nov 4. But that morning was a freakish 70 degrees in Wisconsin! Not so much today. The streets were jam packed when we finally got to the right gate for our tickets (7am) but we were warmer, all mashed together. That's it for now, my fingers are freezing!