... I watched, along with millions of people around the world as Barack Obama was sworn in as the 44th President of the United States of America.
I was glued to CNN all day, from about five hours before the inauguration was due to begin. I watched as the crowds gathered and the mood was jubilant, people were talking about witnessing a historic moment, the CNN reporters were saying they had never seen anything like it, Americans from all over the country, all colours, all ages, rich and poor had come to see their new president take the oath of office. Several people had also come from all over the world - from the UK, Europe, even as far as Australia and the Middle East.
I agree it has been a really great day in history. Obama has made history. For generations to come, thousands of school children will read about him in their history books. College students will research his campaign and quote his speeches in essays. He will be remembered as the first African American to take the position of President of the United States. People will point to him and say "I can achieve the impossible".
For now, we wait and see how his administration will unfold. Personally, I don't envy him one bit. The weight of expectations on his shoulders is immense. He is carrying the hopes of his country and far beyond. He will be scrutinised and criticised at every turn. Already people are saying they were disappointed with his inaugural speech. No doubt he is a strong leader, but at the end of the day, he can't please everyone so some people will be disappointed. I'm not an American, but even I am crossing my fingers for him, willing him to succeed and exceed the expectations of the American people. Tonight the party continues, but tomorrow, Obama and his team will have to roll up their sleeves and get to work, delivering on all those promises he made. But I can bet that the next four years will be anything but dull.
In all this, commentators are saying Obama won because he was able to capture the hearts and minds of the younger generation. He was able to inspire people to trust him for the change they desperately wanted. I'm praying that such a leader will rise in Nigeria too. Obama has taught us that we can expect a whole lot more from our leaders. We should now see that we need leaders who can inspire a whole nation. We need leaders that we can believe in. We need leaders to change the old ways of doing things. And we need leaders who will lead with the interests of their followers at heart. God help us...
So as a new day dawns for the world, I say to everyone witnessing it - congrats! Hope we all take some lessons from these events, from the man and from the moment.