Two years ago, after a failed attempt to secure White House Easter Egg Roll tickets, Lea became aware of a TweetUp to get access to the event. Our second effort was unsuccessful, but we made contact with the White House Social Media Office and procured Garden Tour tickets as a (great) consolation prize. Late last week, we received an invitation to submit for a lottery to attend the arrival ceremony for French President Francois Hollande. Erik was a lucky applicant and headed out early this morning to the White House. The air was crisp and frigid, but the sky was bright. After waiting in a few security lines, he made his way to the South Lawn. A bit after 9:00 am, the event began with the presentation of colors, renditions of Hail to the Chief and national anthems, and brief remarks by both presidents. While Erik was not quite in handshake-distance of the presidents, he was close along the rope line. Other obligations kept Erik from attending the follow-up session in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, but the opportunity to participate in the ceremony was fantastic. Photos below.
|Soldiers and Sailors from the Armed Services|
|Waiting in the Cold|
|The Presidents through a Sea of Hands and Cellphones|
|Greetings from President Obama|
|More Greetings from President Obama|
|President Hollande Addressing the Crowd|
|The First Lady and Presidents at the Ceremony's End|