Inauguration Commute

I wrote this the night before Barack Obama was inaugurated. I had to spend the night at work because I feared that all the traffic would make it too difficult to commute.It’s now well past zero hour and I’m finally getting ready to bed down for the night.

Unremarkable, you say?

Why is he even bothering to mention it, you ask?

I mention it because my bed this evening is an office at NPR. Actually, it’s an air mattress that I borrowed from my neighbor. But it IS situated in an NPR office.

A lot of us are sleeping here tonight because there will be no getting around Washington, D.C., tomorrow. The local all news radio station (Traffic and Weather Together!) is estimating that a record crowd of three million people will be here for Barack Obama’s inauguration.

You can imagine all the extra cars and tour buses that are clogging city streets. Many have drivers unfamiliar with D.C., where traffic can be frustrating even on a good day. It took me more than three hours to make what is usually a ninety minute trip to get here tonight. A colleague of mine (who is sleeping outside the very office in which I am comfortably ensconced) was on the phone with his wife for an hour while she used Mapquest and other internet tools to guide him around trouble spots. And, he’s a Washington traffic veteran!


In the morning, I’ve got a couple of hours to knock around town before I have to start working. Good thing I brought my bike.



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