Hanging Around in a Parking Lot with Thousands of Our “Closest Friends”


Well, we didn’t make friends with all of them, but we did get to know quite a few of the people around us during the time we stood in line, waiting to get into the Sarah Palin Event Saturday!

Let me tell you our little tale.  

The doors were to open at 4:00 for the rally starting at 6:30.  So, Linda, UD, Hubby and I went out to dinner at 2:00 in the afternoon (definitely no line to get into a restaurant at that time of day!) to “fortify” us for the couple boring hours we anticipated spending in our seats at the Coliseum, waiting for the rally to start.  But, of course, we reasoned, the pay-off for the inconvenience of getting there so early would be great seats. Ha!

When we got to the Coliseum, there were already lots of cars in the parking lot, but the Coliseum has multiple venues, so it was hard to tell how many were there for the rally, after all we were there a half hour before the doors would even open! 

But, after we parked and started walking toward the building, this is what we saw.  There was a long line already!  Well, good thing we got here a half hour before the doors opened.  The line shouldn’t be too long.

As we walked along the line, I stopped to take pictures of “people of interest.”

The woman on the right stood in line with me downtown when we got our tickets . . .

the daughter and son-in-law of friends . . .

a couple of women we didn’t know, but, boy, were their hats interesting! (her button says, “Sic ’em, Sarah!”

Did you catch the glasses and lipstick on the hats?


We just kept on walking, along the line, right out into another parking lot, where there were lines of people between every row of cars!

Including at the ball stadium about a half mile away.  I think those were people who had parked at the university down the road and had been shuttled to the stadium by buses.

We couldn’t see a rhyme or reason to the different lines, so we just had to trust the officer who told us to join one, that he knew what he was doing.  It all looked pretty organized, it was just hard to figure out what the organization WAS!

As soon as we joined a line, we realized — it was cold!  Much colder than we had expected, because the wind had really picked up.  We were all glad we had worn coats.  Hubby had on the lightest coat, but he is always too warm, so this felt just right to him!

I’m taking the picture, so who is the woman on the right?  That’s Kathy, who worked in the courthouse when Hubby worked there, and she was in line ahead of us, so we invited her to join our group.  (Now Kathy’s got the right idea for warmth — even a hood!)

That’s my camera hanging around Linda’s neck.  I ran out of battery about the time we got to the line, and had forgotten to put more in, so Linda let me use her camera.  What a good friend.

The people standing behind us, along with alot of other people, hadn’t come prepared for the suddenly colder weather. Those are my gloves she’s wearing.  I thought they would keep her at least a little bit warmer.

 This guy standing ahead of us told a great story about his daughter taking his father to see Gov. Palin last weekend, at the Verizon Center in Indianapolis.  The Verizon center is an outdoor venue that is surrounded by hillsides that are used for extra seating.  The girl and her grandpa had been given “seating” on the hillside because the only actual chairs that were left were VIP.  But, just before the rally began the girl saw that there were a number of empty VIP seats, so she told grandpa that they were going to go sit in some of those seats.  So, she waited until none of the ushers were looking and then said, “Run, Grandpa, Run!” 

This guy said he didn’t know his dad was capable of running any more, but apparently he was, because they got seats!  It was a really funny story the way he told it, and I told him I was going to post his picture on my blog, so that the “seating police” would know where to look for the father/son of the “perps.”

Being a people watcher really helps when you have to kill a couple hours just standing in line.

This man had found a great way to entertain his son.


They eventually noticed that they were being noticed!

A local basketball team is called the Mad Ants.  Here is their mascot passing out season schedules.

Of course, you were given an opportunity to buy Sarah Palin buttons, which we did.


This young business man wanted to be booked for parties to make balloon figures.

After about an hour, Hubby decided to step away from the line and have a cigar. 

This young woman was looking for any little source of warmth she could get!

Finally, the line started moving. 

As we moved closer to the mirrored part of the building, I got a couple shots I like.

Once we got inside the building.  It was packed.  In fact, it was so packed that it was hard to get a picture to show just how packed it was!

Here, we are on one of three wide stairways that all led up to a large open area, up there to the right. that then funneled into a smaller area where the Secret Service were using metal detectors and looking through purses, etc.  THAT’s what made the standing in here almost as long (it seemed) as the wait outside!  But, I’m not really complaining, because I know they have to do that sort of thing now.

When we finally got into the arena, we were seated in a section that was directly to the side of the stage.  Not ideal seating, but we could see.  Unfortunately, a large, high-ceiling auditorium like that made it really hard to take pictures.  So, at that point I handed Linda’s camera over to her, so that she could work with the settings and get the best pictures possible.  (Thank you again, Linda!)  She’s not terribly happy with these, but, believe me, they are much better than anything I would have taken.

Before the program began, when the seats were still filling up (even as long as we waited, we weren’t nearly at the end of the stream of attendees!) the lighting was brighter, and I thought Linda got some pretty good shots of the arena.  By the way, all those empty seats were filled before the program began, which probably explains why the program began almost an hour late.


These letters said: I N D I A N A (heart) P A L I N  (It looks like the person who should have been holding the “I” may have taken a break!)

Hank Williams Jr. opened the show.  He’s a great singer, if you like honky tonk, and was sooo enthusiastic about  Sarah.  I was impressed with the level of involvement and enthusiasm I felt he demonstrated by not leaving the stage when Sarah spoke.  He stood at the back of the stage with her family.  

There were other speakers, but none I imagine you care about.

Then, Sarah and her husband and two younger daughters arrived.  Sarah was dressed in a black jacket, tweed short skirt, and high heeled black boots.  She specifically pointed out that these were her clothes.  She was also wearing earrings made for her by her mother-in-law, who is full-blooded Eskimo.




Her youngest daughter particularly impressed me.  This has to get sooo boring for her.

We really enjoyed the rally and getting to see Gov. Palin in person, even if we did have to wait a looooong time!


16 Responses to Hanging Around in a Parking Lot with Thousands of Our “Closest Friends”

  1. Beth says:

    HER clothes are very cute! 🙂

  2. ElleBee says:

    OK, that pit bull button is FABULOUS! Thanks so much for sharing this with us. My parents were at the Dayton, OH rally where McCain introduced Palin. I’m so jealous that I didn’t get to go to either one of them! 🙂

  3. Hilary says:

    Fun post. I felt like I was there with you.. but without feeling cold.. or claustrophobic! I absolutely love the photos of father and son reading. And your hubby has warm, smiling eyes. 🙂

  4. Sandra says:

    Beth — I already really did like the way she dressed, even before the campaign thought it would be appropriate to buy expensive clothes for her to wear! Duh! She said she buys the majority of her clothes in a consignment shop in Anchorage. Why not just let her continue to be her?!

    ElleBee — It was fun. But I wouldn’t want to do it too often. That wait was a killer!
    My SIL is going to see McCain in Defiance, OH tomorrow. It will be interesting to compare notes with her about the two events.

    Hilary — I’m really glad you enjoyed this post. It took me so long to put it together, I was HOPING some people would like it when I finally got it done! I was totally charmed by the father and son too — so sweet. I especially like the one where his son is looking up at him. I’ll tell Hubby you like his warm, smiling eyes — he’ll say, Huh? He’s not very self-aware — which I find totally charming, .

  5. Linda says:

    What fun! I couldn’t imagine how you were going to capture the essence of our adventure in a single blog post, but you did it! You did a good job of selecting the right photos from the 200 plus pictures that we took between the two of us, too. And I hadn’t even seen the heart among the letters spelling out “Indiana heart Palin.” That made more sense than just the “Indiana Palin” that I saw. 🙂 Good job!

  6. Sandra says:

    Thanks, Linda. I, truly, couldn’t have done it without you, and your camera!

  7. Chourou says:

    Nice feature story! As well as photos. You should have said at the end of posting “ Sandra Kay, from XYZ News, Indiana” or whatever. (^ ^). Now I find myself being already entirely a follower of your blog, I would say again, I enjoy your posting every time stopping by. Great benefit,truly. I have been telling my wife and daughters how enjoyable your blog is, and looks like they are finding out that.

  8. Sandra says:

    Thank you, Chourou. I appreciate you being both a regular reader AND a regular commenter. Your comments are always interesting, even when they’re about RAW liver!! Yuck! 🙂

  9. Julie says:

    I am so jealous that you were able to see Gov. Palin in person! What a great opportunity you had. I’m excited for you that you were able to go to the event. Thanks so much for sharing pictures of the exciting day! I’m sure you won’t soon forget it.

  10. Sandra says:

    Julie — Wellll, if she becomes VP, you’ll practically live “down the street” from her. Then, maybe you’ll see her in the grocery store! 🙂

  11. Pam says:

    I am jealous you got to go! I have a couple friends from Alaska and they LOVE her!

  12. Sandra says:

    Well, Pam, it isn’t like we got close enough to shake hands or even take a good picture, but it WAS fun to get to see her in person. And that kind of crowd is kind of fun to be part of too. You know everyone at least shares your politics!

  13. Julie says:

    I highly doubt that I’d see her if she is elected VP. I have yet to see Pres. Bush in person and I’ve been here for over 6 yrs. now! There’s always hope I guess…. Have a great weekend Aunt Sandy! : )

  14. Sandra says:

    Good point, Julie! 🙂

  15. Barb says:

    I really enjoyed this one! Thx for sharing.

  16. Sandra says:

    Thanks, Barb. It was realllly cold but memorable.

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