frenchpony (frenchpony) wrote,
frenchpony
frenchpony

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Just Another Day In Hyde Park

Just walking along the street today, minding my own business, going to a dance rehearsal . . . 51st Street is blocked off again, because the President and the First Lady are home for Valentine's Day . . . hmmm. There are lots of people standing around on the corners, and there are cops all up and down Woodlawn. Since I'm heading down Woodlawn to the Hillel building anyway, I pause to hang out at 55th Street.

It turns out that the President's motorcade is due to be cruising up Woodlawn any moment now, presumably carrying the Obamas back from church. The cross streets are closed down, and people are congregating on the sidewalk. It's as good an excuse to be late to rehearsal as any -- the President of the United States! -- and there's a lot of friendly chitchat. One of the cops allows as how this is his favorite duty. Someone asks him what his least favorite duty is, and he says it's patrolling the Taste of Chicago. We wonder how he'd feel if Obama decided to attend the Taste, but we don't find out, because his walkie-talkie crackles.

The motorcade has turned onto Woodlawn at 59th Street. The cop who doesn't like the Taste tells us all to move back from the curb, so as not to freak out the Secret Service. Heads all turn toward the south. After a few minutes, we see headlights, and then vroom! Cop cars and shiny black SUVs and a van and an ambulance and a few more SUVs and a few more cop cars, both marked and unmarked, whoosh by the Starbucks, the St. Thomas Catholic school, the Augustana Lutheran Church. I got a quick picture, which doesn't quite capture the scale of things, but which does prove at least that the shiny black SUV portion of the motorcade went by my camera:





And then, in about fifteen seconds, it's gone. Everybody nods, satisfied. We've seen The President (or at least, his motorcade), and he is Back Home. Lovely entertainment, and we've all had a chance to chat and can now return to our normal lives.

Somehow, I still think it's really cool to be living in a simple urban neighborhood where, every now and then, the President's motorcade cruises through.
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