My heart sank as I stood on the Metro platform at the Zoo stop and watched the second completely full train pull away. All those stories of people in Japan pushing people into trains started to make sense. It seemed there was no other way to get on the train and getting the rally looked impossible.
I didn't know what to do so I got on a different train and rode in the opposite direction. Two stops later, the crowd didn't quite as bad and now, I didn't have any other way to get back to the hotel anyway. I moved with the crowd, slipped into the still-packed train and tried not to take up space.
By the time we got to the Metro Center stop, the train was emitting the kind of burnt smell you get when an engine has been pushed a little too far. I knew I'd already missed my waiting friends, but now I was worried we'd experience some kind of mechanical failure and get stuck on the train.
Luckily, I made it off the train and into the river of humanity walking down to the Mall.
My pictures are below.
I think I was somewhere in the middle of the crowd. All we could see was the edge of one giant screen.
In front of me were some people with chairs, and every where there people trying to move through the crowd and get closer.
This was my favorite sign.
This tree-party guy and his girlfriend provided quite a bit of entertainment for the crowd.
The Mythbusters had us all doing the wave. It took 54 seconds for the wave to go from the front of the crowd to the back.
Not only was the rally packed, 7th street was full of people for several blocks.
Who could have predicted that a call to sanity would resonate with so many people.