This entire election season has been felt rather odd. I'm so used to bad news, I don't quite know what to do with good news, and it feels especially odd the way momentous events on the national stage contrast with the mundaneness and routine of everyday life.
The inauguration was a truly heartening sight, with thousands (at least two of whom I personally know) gathering to see the august soon to be president take his oath.
The speech I especially liked. Obama speeches are characteristically strong, but on the trail his speeches generally offered uplift, and he was accused not altogether unfairly of lacking substance. Clearly, he knew what to say to get elected, and now, he's laying down the line on what change really will mean. The speech was a rebuke of many Bush policies, stating, for example, that we reject as false the choice between our ideals and out liberty.
Another high point: it has been a cliche of American policy to rattle of the religions in America, and hail this diversity. Obama did the same in this speech, but made a surprising addition: unbelievers.
The ceremony had it's high and low points. The poem was atrocious. It looked like Obama flubbed the the oath, and many Americans thought "Oh no. I thought he was perfect". Fortunately, we have been reassured: it was Roberts who dropped the ball, not Obama. And really, what do you expect from a Bush appointee? the Chief Justice has all of four years to practice to get it right next time.