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There is No Place Like Home

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The Inauguration was witnessed by the world, and at the same time hundreds of thousands were communicating and sharing their impressions of the event online. It’s a new age fairy tale that transcends Technicolor! Imagine speaking to the entire world, having your message resonate across oceans, land and sky, on radio, television and the internet.  


The very deliberate, thought out phrases that make it to the podium are born from words that President Obama writes, rewrites and envisions until they become the threads that wind throughout our imagination, through our land, and create the new face of a nation.  


As the President delivers the Inaugural address, the White House Staff is busy moving the Bush family out and the Obama family in with synchronized perfection. When President and Mrs. Obama and the girls arrive home, there will not be a single box in sight; the furniture will be placed to their specifications, their beds made and their clothes appropriately placed in their closets and drawers. There’s no place like home. It will be a seamless and efficient transition to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.  


The other adjustments to the Obama family might not be quite as smooth, although, first impressions suggest that First Lady, Michelle Obama will rule the presidential roost with supreme efficiency while sliding on her glass slippers. The girls, I suspect, will fall fluently into the rhythm of their new lives. As will, the little dog too when he or she arrives.  


This entire picture does have the lacy quality, the charm of a beloved, treasured classic fairy tale; the kind that is pictured in books worn by anxious fingertips turning the pages, those that have been captured in film and accompanied by the dazzling swell of music that enhances each brilliant scene. Alas, this is not a fairy tale, at least not the kind that children will read at bedtime. There are some very serious problems facing the United States in 2009, and if asked, the Mirror might not come back with the answer that they are the fairest of them all. President Obama has been thrown into the national forest and will need to use his compass wisely.  


The president asks us to choose “hope over fear” and reminds us that we come to this day with the eyes of our ancestors looking over us and encourages us to believe that we can overcome our many challenges. “All this we can do; all this we will do.” A feeling resounds that there is a pathway that leads out of the Forest and into the Oval Office and opens to a nation and to the world. He says that American ideals “light the world.” There is a magical fairy dust that embodies the idea of change. Although there are certainly grand expectations, there is also an abundance of optimism. And isn’t that exactly where the compass needs to point in this new age realty fairy tale?  


Words become our blanket, our cloth of remembrance, they shield us, protect us, most importantly they change our vision or craft our vision, and our dreams can dance before our eyes as a spectacle of hope, of what can be and of what we can become. During his address on Sunday night at the Lincoln Memorial he said, “Let’s work together to create a better world for our time.” This indeed is our modern version of “living happily ever after.”


As published in RISMedia

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