DC Wrap-Up

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It’s been a wild week here in the District of Columbia. The Inauguration, balls, museums, protests and celebrity political figure sightings all packed in to five short days- there never seems to be a dull moment here(at least not this week).I will cap off my visit tomorrow with a visit to Mt. Vernon and then it’s off to the airport for a long journey home.

I am slowly descending from the utter euphoria of Tuesday. What was surely a day that on any other might have sent me through the roof with frustration was welcomed with open arms. So what if I woke up at 6AM? Who cares that it was 15 degrees and my toes were on the brink of freezing off. And really, that security line that lasted over two hours? What a great way to catch up with the diverse people of America. The mood could not have been better. I have little doubt that I will never be amongst so many people who all shared the same thread of happiness. 

But really, I was one of the smart ones. Well, okay, my sister was one of the smart ones-she ordered train tickets in advance.  We came by train and not Metro, which surely saved us times and astronomical effort. After a comfortable 45 minute ride into DC, we descended on the Mall, which at 7:45 AM was already swollen with people.  I could not believe it. Huge crowds of people were gathered together, some laughing, many singing- all gathered there for one common goal – to watch the first Black President be sworn in. It was a phenomenal sight.

After hanging on the mall for an hour or so, people watching and walking around, it was time to get down to the  business of making our way to where we were camping out all day – The Willard Hotel. This part of the day was challenging and rather sucky and miserable so I will just skip past it. Suffice to say, it did not dampen my spirit. Upon entering The Willard ( the closest hotel to The White House and right along the parade route), we were greeted by swarms of party -goers ready to watch history unfold right before their eyes.

We made our way to the 10th floor suite, where my sis and I were set to attend an all day celebration with 400 or so Washington Insiders. It was here, perched above Pennsylvania Avenue- that I watched from the window as Barack Obama’s convoy made their way from The White House  (two blocks over)  to The Capitol. Everyone cheered. Even the jaded DC types who think they have seen it all. The next several hours unfolded with joy and glee, we all watched on as Barack took the oath, gave his speech and sped away to eat his lunch before he and Michelle made their way down the parade route. I even saw with my own eyes, President Bush exit the White House by helicopter. It was very surreal seeing the events unfold on the telly only to look out the window and see them for myself. I could not believe how fortunate  I was to be out of the cold, watching the inauguration events surrounded by an open bar. A real dream com true.

The rest of the day was a blur, but some of the highlights included seeing Barack’s convoy go right by my window, free white wine and some of the best Tom Yum Soup I have ever had (That came later in the day). I arrived home around 9, exhausted and elated at the same time. 

The Inauguration was clearly the highlight but I have to say that every day here has shown me yet another great thing about DC. For instance, when you come, you simply must go to the Newseum. This is one of the coolest museums I have ever been to. If you care at all about historical events and how they unfold via news, you must pop in. Besides housing a piece of the Berlin Wall and the antenna from the top of the World Trade Center, each day, the front page of every newspaper in the word is out on display. It’s a fantastic attraction and worth the twenty dollar entrance fee.

On my second to last day, I toured the Capitol, saw the House of Representatives and spied House Leader Nancy Pelosi scurrying by.I figure that’s like seeing Reese Witherspoon in LA – a real Washington celebrity. All in all, it was incredible. I am home, happy and sleepy. Until next time…check out some DC snaps:

The Convoy of Barack

Protesters march in Washington

The Berlin Wall

Our Nations Capitol

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3 Responses to “DC Wrap-Up”

  1. Hey Jennifer – it was really fun hanging out with you. Come back to DC soon!

  2. My friend on Orkut shared this link with me and I’m not dissapointed that I came to your blog.

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