We got up a little later than planned, and got on the road a little after 7. We took the toll road then got off at Tyson’s, then took back roads to West Falls Church Metro. Our first choice was parking at Ballston Mall, but West Falls was on the way and it wasn’t too bad. Parking was full, but we parked about a 10 minute walk away. When we got to the station, there was a long line to get in, but a bus pulled up as we were getting to the end of the line. It was a free ride with no stops, so we had no problem hopping aboard. It was a quick ride in as 66 was closed to other traffic, but as we found out the driver didn’t know what he was doing, and missed his exit and had to drop us at the exit for E St. We started walking, were soon at the Lincoln Memorial, then started walking straight up the Mall.
When we got to the front of the Washington Monument, it was apparent that the rest of the Mall to the Capitol was packed, so we decided to stop there, slightly to the right of the memorial, with a good view of the Jumbotrons. We had our group of 6, so we got some space once we set down the blanket. It was a little after 9 by that point, so we didn’t have too much time to kill. The Jumbotrons were replaying Sunday’s concert, and once again Garth Brooks got everyone moving. Betsy and I went on a drink run (a 50/50 mix of hot chocolate and cocoa was very popular) and got back with a little bit of time as guests were escorted on stage. Unfortunately we lost Kai, as she left for a bathroom break and couldn’t find us again.
The ceremony went off without a hitch – the introduction of Bush and Cheney got some boos and rousing chants of “Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye”. The swearing in and speech were very moving, and at times all we could hear was Obama speaking and the 50 flags at the base of the Washington Monument flapping in the breeze. Afterwards we waited and finally found Kai, then walked back to the Lincoln Memorial and across the Memorial Bridge and hopped on the Metro. We got back home by 2:30, much earlier than I thought.
We got warm and watched the parade while we snacked on mini-pizzas and spanakopita and relaxed, then headed over to Hooked in the evening. There had been talk about balls, but the demand kept the supply a bit too expensive for us (maybe for his second term). The girls had expressed interest in crab cakes and sushi, so we figured we would take them to the best place we knew, which happened to be close. It was a nice closer to a great day. Jill and I both started with a bisque, lobster for me and she-crab for her. Then I had the fried calamari, tuna with a jalapeno sauce, wakame salad and two pieces of salmon sushi, all very good. Jill had the sea bass marinated in Miso sauce, the Crispy Spicy Shrimp (I finished that, very good) and grilled asparagus. Paired with some sake, it was perfect.
There’s also a nice play by play of Sunday here.