Inauguration Day

January 20, 2009

My day began with champagne and two friends, Benjamin Alexander Clarke and Kelley Burke, at an elbow-to-elbow cafe, Krakow Koffeehouse, where we watched President Obama sworn in. It ended with a neighborhood potluck dinner and never-to-forget, flag-waving march with 40 other people through the streets of Portland.

During the march, people rushed out of their homes at the sound of our chants — Obama! Obama! Obama! — and the drums and the kazoos and the cowbells. Besides a flag, I carried the Obama portrait that Benjamin painted and my wife Suzame and I bought. Cars streaming past on busy Northeast Broadway honked repeatedly at the sight.

The sight I’ll never forget is our little boy, Atticus, three years old, waving an American flag in each hand and calling out the name of the nation’s new leader.