I was there. Again! And while less spectacular than the 2009 inauguration, it was definitely worth it. As you all know by now, the speech was fantastic! Perhaps, in my view, even better and more visionary than the one in 2009. And it felt like this year’s inauguration, with President Obama and his family, Sonia Sotomayor, and Richard Bianco (whose poem, by the way, was very touching) really represented today’s America Also, Charles Schumer did a good job at hosting it – really funny and relaxed, and the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir did the event’s best performance. Certain things worked less well, of course. I’m not sure who is responsible for organizing the logistics around the inaugurations, but they definitely could learn some from the big Northern European Music festivals. Just as last time, there were too few jumbotrons, the speakers or sound system didn’t work properly (or barely at all where I was standing), and the logistics of people, facilities, trashcans, etc, was poor as always. (It’s sometimes curious how much power this city still has in the world…) What makes this event so special, though, is to see Washington DC come together. I don’t mean Washington as in the Federal Government, but Washington DC as in the city district. In many aspects, it’s such a divided city. Not between the haves and the have nots, but between those with prospects, education, and opportunities, and those almost without. But when President Obama is inaugurated at the National Mall, we’re all there and we’re all celebrating. It’s a nice feeling!
18th street packed with people walking back from the Mall after the inauguration.