On my way to work yesterday, I heard that President Obama would be at the Convention Center in Portland and because of that my evening train would be delayed. Well, the Convention Center is just one short block away from where I catch the Max, so I thought I'd go check it out after work.
But then I read that people had been lining up since dawn and that not everyone there would get in when the doors opened at 4. I don't get off till 6, but when I got off my bus at the station, I wanted to see what the deal was anyway.
I walked over to the Convention Center and saw a bunch of policemen guarding the back door because the President hadn't arrived yet. I thought, "Well maybe I'll catch a glimpse as he's rushed inside," but I stood there for a long time and nothing was happening. So I went around to the doors just to see what else there was. As I walked up, there was a small group to whom a secret serviceman gestured and said, "All right, you're the last group in." I made myself a part of that group and went on inside!
I had to wait through a lot of other political speakers, but eventually President Obama came in and spoke for a good half hour. It wasn't terribly crowded so I got pretty close - probably the closest I'll ever get to a president. However, like in side mirrors on a car, objects in an iPhone camera are closer than they appear, so this picture is misleading about my proximity:
Really, I could see his face clearly enough to see his varying expressions, which is saying something because I'm approaching blindness faster than I would prefer. (My eyesight takes after my mom's who, without contacts, says, "I can still see light and color" - oh, good)
Now I've seen a president in person, and rather spontaneously too!