That was one long parade, the inauguration.
If you count the time it took for President Obama to get from the Capitol to the reviewing stand, that alone ate up most of his first term. Then the bands and whatnot went on for some time, leaving everyone quite exhausted. The reviewing stand was pretty much empty by the end. I saw signs on the chairs for the Joint Chiefs of Staff, for their guests, and I don't know who all else. Obviously there was plenty of room there for me, if I happened to be in Washington, D.C., and was a also a trusted, security-cleared observer.
Unfortunately I was here at the half acre, tending to more local concerns, like getting Grandma her Cream of Wheat and making her comfortable in bed. We've had some cold weather, with the plastic puffed out on the windows, and it's been my big fear that gaps develop around that. But so far everything's holding. My responsibilities never end. It's a constant vigil, that and other home things. So I couldn't go to the White House.
It was nice seeing the whole ceremony today, though, with Mr. Obama and all the festivities. It was too bad Senator Kennedy got sick, and Senator Byrd. I know we have a good margin of Democratic senators over the Republicans, but if we lose two a day I don't think we can hold out that long. Two at the same meal! It might be worth checking to make sure the cooks weren't Republicans. It seems awfully suspicious that the cameras go out, two senators fall close to their death, then the cameras come back on and everything's back to normal.
As for all the activities, this is why President Obama works out all the time. Just making it through a typical day would kill anyone else.