Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Today I got teary-eyed watching that amazing crowd of hopeful people on the Washington mall and seeing President Obama take the oath of office. I’m sure there are plenty of cynics out there who’d call me a sap, and in a way I join them in wondering how in the world even the most able leader could guide us out of the mess we’ve created for ourselves -- but I’m inspired by our new president and seeing that inspired crowd gives me hope for our country and our world.

At the same time this morning, I was thinking of Rob’s mom, who I visited in the hospital on Saturday. I’ve been carrying a picture of her around in my head – weary, battered by all that’s she been through and yet still smiling at us in spite of it all – ever since we saw her. And that’s made me weepy too.

This evening we heard from Rob’s sister that Ann had her best day so far. For the first time in two weeks of hospitalization -- after suffering a stroke and kidney failure among other complications from her pneumonia -- she sat in a chair for a while instead of being confined to the bed. And she called Rob’s dad by name – or by her name for him: “Dad.” So we’ll take hope for Ann and hope for our country all at once.

On a lighter note, we watched Obama take the oath of office and deliver the first part of his inaugural speech on videotape with Will and Owen on our laps tonight. I’d pointed out that people were listening to Obama in Atlanta and other parts of the country as the cameras cut to various locations where people were watching the speech via television. When I asked Will if he thought Obama was a good speaker, he said, “Yeah, he speaks really loud. People can hear him across the states.”

And when Rob pointed out our new vice president, Joe Biden, Will asked, “Is that the guy who kept talking about Joe the Plumber?”

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