Wednesday, January 21, 2009

New Voices at the Inauguration

This weekend some of your New Voices authors were out experiencing the historic inauguration events in our nation's capitol. You can see some of our individual experiences at Sunday's concert and an inaugural ball in today's other posts. However, we also wanted to share our experiences from the National Mall during the inauguration itself.

Emily Norton's 5 foot 2 inch perspective from 3 blocks in front of the Washington Monument ...

was challenging. It's tough to be short in a crowd! Was it worth waking up at 5am for an hour and 45 minute metro ride (that would take 25 minutes tops on a good day)? Definitely. What struck me the most was the crowd's energy and attitude... I met people from Los Angeles, Tennessee, South Carolina, and Canada! And the one thing we all had in common is a shared hope for a brighter future.

Hillary's perspective from a location allowing occasional glimpses of the top of the Capitol...
Attending both the We Are One concert and the Inauguration was more than I'd bargained for but when tickets to the Standing Room Only area in front of the National Mall became available (the day before inauguration) my misgivings fled. Of course I want to be in those enormous crowds again, clad in many, many layers and jostling my way hither and yon, I told myself.

Well, maybe I was a little crazy- I could definitely see more from my couch (thanks to my roommate for DVRing) than I could from the hill we stood on, but just being there was something pretty special. Seeing the nods of people around me as President Obama gave a stirring speech and recruited us all as agents of change made me glad I joined the fray!

Heather's perspective from behind the really (nice) tall guy near the Capitol Reflecting Pool ...

The most amazing part of the ceremony for me was the music. John Williams' "Air and Simple Gifts" arrangement was breathtaking. My all-time favorite composer does a piece that I've loved since I could first sing (I always knew it as "Lord of the Dance"). It was emotional and moving and the highlight of the inauguration. It was a perfect way to bring in a new era in the American presidency.

We'd love to hear about your experiences in the comments section!

1 comment:

  1. My whole lab and a few extra professors and students met in a classroom where we had a projector and laptop hooked up with a sound system. The excitement was palpable in a room full of educated Obama supporters. I brought sugar cookies =]