January 20th

On Tuesday, I watched the inauguration ceremony on a movie-sized screen with about 800 people around me. When Aretha Franklin sang "My Country 'Tis of Thee," my eyes filled with tears. There she was with her outlandishly wonderful gray hat. I could feel the joy in her heart as she sang for our first African-American president.


When Barak Obama spoke, I felt that he was speaking only to me. For those eighteen minutes, it seemed possible that our country could meet any challenge it faced. I went back to my desk with a lighter step.


At home in the evening, I heard snippets of his speech over and over again, never tiring of the message. I watched TV on and off for much of the evening. I saw the President and First Lady dancing at one of the balls, and decided that if Michele's mom ever needed an assistant first-baby sitter, I would apply.


I think Peter was a little astonished to hear me launch into My Country "Tis of Thee" once we had turned out the lights.


So was I.


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