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The Inauguration || NYC Elopement Packages

On Sunday morning, I hopped a train to Washington D.C. to spend a few days with my best friend, Hilary, and to go to the Inauguration. I’d bought my train ticket in a frenzy on election night, and was headed down with zero expectations. I just felt I wanted to be there in some capacity for a lot of reasons. (I guess I’m outing myself as a liberal on my business blog, but something tells me you probably already knew that about me anyway. And I don’t intend to talk about politics, so fear not.)

We had intended to stand on The Mall, but at the very last minute – literally on Saturday morning – John’s amazing aunt was able to get us two tickets to stand in Union Square in front of the Capitol, which was truly incredible and something Hilary and I are so grateful for. We left her apartment in Arlington at 5:30am, miraculously came out of the Metro in Chinatown in front of an open Starbucks twenty minutes later, and by 6:15am we were in line for security to get into Union Square – coffee in hand (hallelujah). It took us a solid two hours to get through security, but that was less time than it took me to vote on election day, so that’s something.

And as an aside – I have nothing but compliments for the organization of the entire event. Everything ran incredibly smoothly. While the lines were long, they always kept moving, and everyone working the event – the soldiers and police officers – were so wonderful in every way: clear in their directions, and very helpful and kind. We had absolutely no problems coming or going – it could not have been easier. Well done handling a million people, Washington D.C.

We spent the few hours before the Inauguration began walking around our ticketed area, taking photographs of all the people there, and listening to the bands that were already playing by the time we arrived in Union Square at 8:15am. It was such a happy and light atmosphere – everyone was so friendly and laid back. We weren’t all crammed together like sardines. It was just fun and relaxed. And freeeeeezing, I might add, but we were well bundled.

And then the actual Inauguration began and everyone just went nuts with excitement. The air was just electric. I’ve never been a part of anything like it in my entire life. Hearing President Obama speak in person is something that I will never forget as long as I live – it was truly one of the most wonderful moments of my entire life. To hear him speak about marriage equality, equal pay for women, climate change… it felt like a new day. I just couldn’t stop from crying. It was absolutely worth waking up at 4:30am for, standing out in the freezing cold for, traveling from New York City for…

“We, the people, still believe that our obligations as Americans are not just to ourselves, but to all posterity.  We will respond to the threat of climate change, knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and future generations. Some may still deny the overwhelming judgment of science, but none can avoid the devastating impact of raging fires and crippling drought and more powerful storms…

We, the people, declare today that the most evident of truths –- that all of us are created equal –- is the star that guides us still; just as it guided our forebears through Seneca Falls, and Selma, and Stonewall…

It is now our generation’s task to carry on what those pioneers began.  For our journey is not complete until our wives, our mothers and daughters can earn a living equal to their efforts. Our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law… for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well.”

 

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  • I ended up not making it to DC, and watched the coverage from New York, but I cried watching that speech and just cried re-reading it here. I love these photos of what it was like to be there! So much energy!!!

  • phew… you couldn’t have paid me to stand in the cold in that huge crowd! so glad you braved it and got to experience it :)

  • Lovely photos! And I got teary reading about you in tears. Such a magical event! Glad you were able to go!!

  • You raise an interesting point in your first paragraph, which is how often we photographers are told we need to SHARE SHARE SHARE our personalities, and yet politics are supposedly an off-limits topic, because heaven forbid you offend or repel someone based on something so fundamental as what you actually believe in. This is fascinating to me! At some point I decided that if a client was going to reject me based on my politics, I’m probably better off.

    Way to start with a tangent, self. Anyway, I watched on TV (I speak for all Canadians when I say we have a crush on Obama). It was cool to know that you were there. :)

  • Amazing! I love your photos of this incredible event, and your words.

  • DUDE. I got chills all over again when I read those words. I cried through that part of his speech in the middle of screaming/cheering as loudly as I could. Such an amazing moment to be a part of. And yes – Electric. It was in the air like nothing I’ve felt before. I’ll never forget it for the rest of my life.

  • What an inspiring set of photographs! I’m sorry I wasn’t able to make it down to the city but you did a fabulous job capturing it. Thanks for sharing!

  • Love this post! And your photos! I definitely cried again reading that part of his speech. <3

  • Ah, it was so cold! Thank you for sharing your experience, I had no idea what it the inauguration was like!

  • So beautiful! Love seeing this from your perspective as well as Christy Tyler’s!!!!! I hope I get to go one day!

  • Lauren

    Nice coat, lady ;)