Thousands of people gathered near the Capitol today to pick up their tickets for one or more of the many events tomorrow, Inauguration Day.
Standing in line to the Cannon Office Building for over three hours, I was bound to meet a few people. Two African-Americans from Houston stood in front of me. They have travelled all over the country following Obama and see this as the final stop in a journey of a lifetime.
A younger man who holds a local office in a Northern California district kept up our spirits as we waited and waited in the cold, windy weather. “It’s all part of the experience,” he said.
There is certainly a sense of community this weekend. Everyone is here to be a part of history, whether they voted for Obama or McCain, whether they are white, black, Latino, Asian. Instead of fighting the crowds and jockeying for position, people are friendly and understanding. Sure, no one would turn down a seated VIP ticket, but more often, people I talked with just travelled to D.C. to experience the atmosphere.
I am getting up tomorrow around 4am to head down to the Mall. I would like to get as close as possible to the ceremony, but more than anything I want to tell my future kids and generations: “I attended the Inauguration of Barack Obama.” Incredible!