WASHINGTON, D.C. (WAOK)- My journey to President Obama’s inauguration started out early and cold. We left the Hotel Lombardy room at 5:30 am after 3 hours sleep headed to the Metro for the ride to the Capitol. We only stayed at the hotel one night because rooms were outrageous in D.C. Some hotel rooms were going for as much as $3,000.00 a night online.
The Hotel Lombardy is 4 blocks walking distance from the White House so the location was great. It is close to two Metro stations so wherever we had to go we could get there in 15 minutes on the Metro.
I was prepared for massive crowds like 2009 when people said they had to wait at the train stations for more than an hour to get on board only to wait in line again to go through security and gain entrance to the Capitol grounds. The train ride at 5:45 am. was very smooth. Trains were crowded but not uncomfortable. The crowd was estimated to be half of what it was in 2009, about 1 million people.
We arrived at our destination to get in a long, long, long, long, long, long, line to go through the Orange Gate security check. The line moved relatively quickly. By 8 am we were walking through the gate trying to find a nice spot to stand for the ceremony which didn’t start until 11 a.m.
The most popular shoe of the day for ladies….UGG boots. I fit right in with mine and I am so glad I wore them. My feet were nice and warm. Hand warmers kept my hands warm in my gloves.
The weather was very cold and it became uncomfortable standing so I eventually found some folks who had taken over a tree. We all staked out a part of the root and stood, sat or leaned on it to get some relief. As more people arrived, the less I could see and by the time the first family was introduced and the program got underway I could only hear what was happening.
A little disappointed but at least I can say that I WAS THERE and I’ve got the button to prove it.