January 20, 2009

History

There's nothing I can say about today's events that has not already been said many times and by many people. So I'll just share with you the story of our day, which was very special indeed.
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We decided Monday night that we simply could not stay home and watch the inauguration of our country's first African-American President on our couch behind shut doors. I wanted Harper to witness something of this day, and I knew that while he would never remember what was shown and said on television, he just might remember the excitement that so many people were feeling if he could see it in person.
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We woke up to a crisp, sunny morning, and after greeting one of our neighbors with shouts of shared joy, we set off for Berkeley to watch the inauguration broadcast on a giant video screen in Sproul Plaza. It was so moving for Byrne and me to witness history in a place of such historical and personal significance for us. The air was electric as students, faculty, and community members packed in tightly to listen with silence and respect (except for some collective cheering, and OK, occasional booing) to the morning's proceedings.
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I will never forget where I was and how I felt this morning, standing with my family surrounded by a sea of strangers--our family for that precious hour. May we all move forward with the same sense of inspiration we felt today, the same energy, focus, and determination to pull this country up and out and to help it reach its fullest promise.
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