we're back! the trip was great. the kids were such troopers on the way to DC and back (10+ hours each way!). we saw some old friends and made some new ones and our cousin from NY joined us. we went downtown for both the free concert on Sunday and the inauguration on Tuesday.
all you people who watched it at home probably got a better view of everything than we did, but there was such a great buzz in DC this weekend- i'm so glad we were there. there was a palpable sense of joy in the air. i've been sitting here for 1/2 an hour trying to synthesize my feelings for you, and it's too hard, and i don't know if i can do it before the baby wakes up, and there is a mountain of laundry and unpacking waiting for me.
watch the speech
or read it, and feel both the hope and the call for change. know that i feel so moved and hopeful that Barack Obama is now President, and that i have both no doubt and every doubt that anything in the US will change.
here is some of the weekend in picture and sound:
we watched the concert on a Jumbotron just under the Washington Monument (about 1 1/2 miles from the stage!) Amazing line-up including Bruce Springsteen, U2, Beyonce, Mary J. Blige, Garth Brooks, James Taylor, and Pete Seeger.
waaaaaay back there you can see the Lincoln Memorial, where the stage was:
to give you a sense of the concert, here's a little video i shot of Pete Seeger and Bruce Springsteen's "This Land Is Your Land" (i had to put it on youtube to put it here- too big to directly upload)
some very enthusiastic Obama supporters:
leaving the concert:
On Inauguration Day we were even further away (down by the Lincoln Memorial, i think about 4 miles from the Inauguration site!) watching on the jumbotron with crowds stretching all the way to the Capitol Building.
and some fans:
the ceremony closed with a blessing from Rev. Dr. Joseph Lowery, the man who walked with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and who led the march on Selma. here are a few of his words:
Bless President Barack, First Lady Michelle. Look over our little angelic Sasha and Malia.
We go now to walk together as children, pledging that we won't get weary in the difficult days ahead. We know you will not leave us alone.
With your hands of power and your heart of love, help us then, now, Lord, to work for that day when nations shall not lift up sword against nation, when tanks will be beaten into tractors, when every man and every woman shall sit under his or her own vine and fig tree and none shall be afraid, when justice will roll down like waters and righteousness as a mighty stream.
Lord, in the memory of all the saints who from their labors rest, and in the joy of a new beginning, we ask you to help us work for that day when black will not be asked to get in back, when brown can stick around ... when yellow will be mellow ... when the red man can get ahead, man; and when white will embrace what is right. That all those who do justice and love mercy say Amen.
here's a snap from our personal celebration, a lunch feast, where Maxine had her first taste of Ethiopian food and charmed everyone by standing on her chair, shouting, "Obama!"