Legend has it that if the Washington Redskins win their game before election day, the incumbent party wins. If they lose, the opposing party wins. On November 3rd, election eve, they lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers 6-23.
Across the country and maybe even the world this was a memorable enough moment that I for one will always remember. I was sitting in this tiny yet packed Arab cafe with 4 others. We were watching the electoral vote update on the muted screen hung in the corner and the owner had a James Blunt CD on repeat. We were all getting text message updates from various loved ones, I replied back to most of them saying "yea I know I'm watching :)". One of the girls I was with proudly announced she voted for McCain but admitted she knew he had no choice. Had she said that a bit louder (the voting for mccain part) we would have been ostracized from the rest of the crowd there.
The excitement and hint of nervousness was thick in the air. There were lots of weak jokes, lots of praying, lots of hi-fiving and hugging. It was sometime close to midnight when a news flash announced that Barack Obama is now the 44th president of the USA. By then it was just me and one other girl from our group and we stuck around waiting for that moment. Everyone got on their feet and stood around the TV as the sound came on and the room alternated from emotional jubilee to an exhausted speechlessness.
We listened to McCain say his final words and I thought it was a bit odd that he called this day a victory for African Americans as opposed to a reason for all to celebrate. When he mentioned Sarah Palin the room moaned and groaned. We stuck around until Obama made his speech as we were bombarded with text messages.
It was late, it was a weekday, we all got up early to see to our daily life obligations, some of us spent hours in lines, and I now felt safe to call it a night. I just hoped I wouldn't fall asleep at the wheel driving home. This morning definitely feels like a brand new day!