Bose’ Akadiri, a geological technician from Oklahoma City, went to the inauguration with some friends. Here’s her account of the trip:
“Katie and I woke up at 3:15am and gave each other HUGE hugs! We were ready. Ready to witness HISTORY! So we got dressed. Our layers consisted of tights, thermals (top and bottom), jeans, 2 pairs of socks, undershirt, turtleneck, norhtface fleece, and peacoat. Along with all that clothing we were armed with hot hands and toasty toes…multiple sets!
We arrived at the subway at 4am to realize we were not alone in waking up early. It was packed! There were already lines. So we bought a ton of copies of the Washington Post and kept trucking. We arrived at the lawn around 4:30am and there was a monstrous line. Luckily, we power walked it to the front and were able to snag spots on the front row. The front row of the non-ticket holders that is. It was FABULUOS! We were literally as close as one could get without having tickets. So then we had to wait it out — no bathroom breaks, no food, no water, nothing but the company of my good friend Katie and the people around us for the next 7 ½ hours. We were pumped! Luckily they began to play music for us to listen to and we had a blast singing and dancing. We also took pictures all throughout the morning b/c we were able to watch the sun rise behind the capital. Just before the ceremony begun they played the concert from Sunday. It was really amazing that they had so many screens so that people all the way down the mall could see what was going on.
Then it started!
They were announcing who was there and seating them and everyone began to get super pumped to see Obama! There were tons of people chanting, “woowing”, screaming, and just making a ton of noise in general. Then when Obama came out everyone cheered hysterically! The anticipation of the swearing in was so intense. When he fumbled his words as he was repeating the swearing in it was like it made him more human and his recovery was just so great and he remained perfectly poised. It was barely even noticeable. Then when he spoke there was complete silence among the crowd. In retrospect that seems so crazy because there were millions of people and we were all being quite to hear ONE man speak.
Then there was the aftermath.
Katie and I had a 6:30pm flight from the airport in Baltimore (23 miles outside of DC). We had to haul ourselves all the way to her cousin’s (2 miles from the capitol) to get our stuff then attempt public transportation back to the airport. We were so nervous about missing the flight. We didn’t want to do the metro because the lines were insane so we walked; however, we couldn’t walk to straight shoot because of the parade route. So then it turned into a 4 hour walk, which was only semi-miserable. Luckily we had already packed so all we had to do was grab and run. Then we made it to the airport and all was done.”