Saturday, September 19, 2009

What I Saw at the Revolution

I didn't write this, but I certainly lived it. Many thanks to Kathy Garriott for her beautiful account of a beautiful day. I cried like a baby reading it...if you think it sounds corny, you weren't there.

"Do you think there'll be porta-potties?" Was the anxious question my husband asked. He's in his fifties, after all. He asked about restroom facilities several days before we left for DC, and enjoined me to "find out on the internet" because he thinks I can find out anything on the internet. It was from the various conservative blogs and forums that I haunt on the net that had inspired me to put together this trip to DC in the first place. Like most tea-partiers, I am only loosely affiliated with any of the organizers. I was anxious about restrooms, too, and anxious about the notorious summer heat and humidity of our nation's capitol. I'm in my fifties, after all. I knew the organizers of this event were not professionals (and I mean that in the nicest way) and things like adequate porta-potties might not have crossed their radar.

So we set off to DC with our supplies of poster-making materials and some folding camp chairs, umbrellas, trail mix, and basic first-aid. If there were no restrooms, well, we'd just deal with that when we got there.

We'd booked a hotel in the downtown area, and when we arrived a family with three small children was also checking in with some Tea Party paraphrenalia. If they can face bringing three children under five to a political rally with the uncertain knowledge of available restrooms, I'd better stop whining.

The only preparation we had for this Tea Party were the downloaded instructions: "We meet at Freedom Plaza between 9 and 11, then we march down Pennsylvania to our rally on Capitol Hill." Getting up late, we were on the street at 10 for the twenty-minute walk to Freedom Plaza, marked on our city map. We started seeing other tea-partiers with their signs and flags, camp chairs slung over their shoulders and Uncle Sam fashions, and we walked together and spoke together without introduction like old alums from the same school.

"Heading to Freedom Plaza?" asked the Rebels in Fanny Packs. "Yep!" We were headed west on F street, roughly parallel to Pennsylvania Avenue. Maps were consulted, we all had several, maps with earnest orange and pink highlighting. We were at 11th Street when we glanced two blocks south toward Pennsylvania Avenue and stopped in shock.
Read the rest here.

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