Wednesday, November 5, 2008

A Good Day to be in the USA

Call it luck of the draw, but I got to be in the U.S. today. I'm not that politically inclined, but the election was pretty special, and everyone senses we're living important history right now. It's a good day to be an American, it's a good day for America, it's a good day in the eyes of most people outside America, and it's a good day to be in the USA. Smiles all around for me.

Obama is in the House now, and hopefully the honeymoon will be a long one. If you remember JFK and MLK, it's a good feeling to see so many dreams finally realized, and it's a great reminder of how special democracy can be.

I kind of thought I'd see or sense a noticeable mood of joy here, but I really haven't - strange. The airports - both Toronto and Dallas were unusually quiet, and there hasn't been any visible sign to say today is different from any other day. To be fair, I'm deep in the heart of Texas - GWB country - and their GOP stripes didn't change in 2008.

With today being such a special time, and being in Dallas, I just figured out what to do about this. This is a short trip for me, but the hotel is not far from Dealey Plaza. I've never been there, and I couldn't imagine a more appropriate time to make a quick pilgrimage to see it.

In many ways, Barack Obama's journey started there. The dreams of equality didn't die with JFK, and they didn't die with MLK. Clinton was a good JFK wannabe, but Barack may end up a better successor to his spirit of hope, change and youth. Like JFK, he is a true breakthrough in his own right. Time will tell if he's the real deal or if he'll just be learning on the job, but it's pretty clear that the world hasn't felt this good about the USA in a long time. Things are much easier to accomplish when people like you, and we have nowhere to go but up now that the Bush era is over.

I'll get off that soapbox now - photos coming tomorrow. Back to work. I'm in Dallas to attend the Korean Tech Showcase, and so far, it's been just great. I'm virtually certain I'm the only analyst here, so I'm getting to see stuff most of my peers won't likely see for some time yet if at all. Lucky me.

I've had meetings with companies with really interesting technologies, and am looking forward to more of the same tomorrow. It's too early to blog about the details, but as I get to know some of them better, I'll bring you up to date.

Nice tie-in at the airport. CNN's 24/7 election coverage, and a TV display stand by Samsung, Korea's most famous tech company.


Sidebar... I had one of those only-in-America moments here at the airport. While waiting for my ride, I heard this announcement over the PA system: "the post-election noon day prayer will be held in the chapel in Terminal 1". Praise the Lord and God Bless America... who said Church and State were separate? :-)



Couldn't resist. Remember pay phones? They sure are becoming an extinct species in the U.S., and I see this scene at almost every hotel/conference center I travel to. Ugly. Virtually everyone seems to have a cell phone here, and there is simply no rhyme or reason to use a pay phone these days.


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