When my husband was younger, he saw Reagan. My son’s marching band performed at a George W. Bush rally. But today it was my turn to see a president. My daughter and I suddenly found ourselves with tickets and headed down to Cincinnati to see President Barack Obama. It was fantastic!
Somehow, in the course of 45 minutes in which I stood in the same spot, I snapped 27 pictures. I just couldn’t believe I was there. The crowd was wonderful. There was a spirit of community that I’ve found again and again in Cincinnati. Everyone was considerate of each other, making sure that no one was blocking anyone else’s view. We were all there for the same thing: to see the President and cheer him on toward “Four More Years.” I can still hear that vibrant chant in my ears.
Obama talked about all the expected issues: taxes, education, bringing our troops home, Obamacare, jobs, etc.. It was all very moving, but I don’t need to tell you about that here. You can read that in the papers. I’d rather share what it was like to be there with my 12-year-old daughter, who may not have realized the enormity of getting to see a President today. I think that will come later, in hindsight. She did remark that he was very funny. He did crack quite a few jokes. I was glad she was paying attention.
What may have made even more of an impression in the immediacy of the day was the good deed a woman did on our way there.
In order to get to the Seasongood Pavilion in Eden Park where the President was scheduled to speak, we had to park up a steep hill, walk down the hill past the pavilion and approach from an even steeper angle. We didn’t mind. We certainly understood the need for security and closed-off streets. What surprised us was a woman who came down the hill and waved us over to her SUV. She offered us and four other women a ride up the hill. We gratefully accepted and jumped in her car. Another van pulled over and picked up some other event-goers.
“Are you part of his campaign group?” I asked her as I thanked her for the ride.
“No. I’m actually a Republican,” she said, “but it’s a really steep hill, even if you’re used to it.”
And that, my friends, made my day. The coming together of differing parties to unite in an historical event in Cincinnati. No matter your party affiliation, we should all honor the office of the President. This woman kindly gave us a ride, then drove away and picked up more people at the bottom of the hill. This is not the first time I’ve been impressed with Cincinnatians and their graciousness and I know it won’t be the last.
I will remember her kindness as the second greatest thing that happened to me today. But nothing can compare to seeing President Obama in person. My son and husband got to see their presidents. Now my daughter and I have seen ours, and it’s something we’ll never forget.