Cindy on March 18, 2009 at 9:59 pm
Today I took our two boys to the neighboring city of Costa Mesa, CA to try and catch a glimpse of President Obama’s motorcade. Although his route was undisclosed, I figured we’d pick a spot to park, walk a little toward the OC Fairgrounds, and hope that he passed by. Although I did not vote for Obama, nor agree with his policies, I thought that that it would still be a historical day our boys would remember forever if we caught sight of him, it sure proved to be true.
We found a nice curb to sit and hang out on, just the three of us and about six other strangers. Within an hour Airforce One flew directly overhead heading toward Long Beach. It was about then that we began noticing S.W.A.T. officers on buildings around us and that our crowd had grown to about 50. A while later dozens of police officers and secret service arrived, as cones were set in the streets and caution tape was neatly wrapped around trees. Approximately two hours after arriving, news crews from four different channels, and a crowd of approximately 80 people were gathered on our corner.
An police officer approached a section of approximately 20 protesters and told them that there would be “nothing to see” where they were. The officer claimed that there was a better place on the front facing street of the fairgrounds for them. Those protesters chose to stay right where they were however as they were suspicious about why the officer would offer such advice without prompt. Within 20 minutes of that officer’s advice we understood why. Suddenly we were in a “secret-service lock down area” and told that we couldn’t leave “until after the President arrived”. Turns out, their suspicions were spot-on.
Waiting in the brewing pot for the President to arrive gave both sides ample time to bicker and banter, where tempers rose and foul language was exchanged within full view of the t.v. cameras. By 3:40pm four decoy helicopters, and Marine One, landed directly on the corner perpendicular to us. The blades from the helicopters whipped our hair wildly around and deafened every noise around us. The boys’ eyes were as wide as watermelons.
From behind the barracade of some 30 OCTA buses, President Obama exited Marine One and entered his limsosine. Shouts of both jubilation and condemnation surrounded us on all sides.
The town hall meeting began at 4:00pm, and the boys and I left around 4:40pm once things on our little corner became too profane and combustive. We arrived home just in time to catch the 5:00pm news and see the three of us and our little corner on t.v.
The news reporter noted gleefully that it was a “quiet day in Costa Mesa” and that even the “five protesters” he counted “didn’t dampen the Obama reception in Orange County”.
After that, the reporter hopped right back onto the Obama Train and headed out of town.
(Caption above each picture)
S.W.A.T. officer on roof behind us
Marine One landing on adjacent corner
The “five” protesters
(Below picture added 3/21)
Some of the protestors (from behind), Obama-supporters facing us on opposite corner.
Category: News |