The line at SNHU at 10:15 was out the doors, around the corner and into the parking lots. It was as long as I've seen for any political personality barring Bernie Sanders.
Fortunately, I had a secret weapon. Those in line surely were not pleased when I asked for "Table C" and was told I could go to the front of the line and walked right in.
I had been thinking about attending to hear Mrs. Obama speak when a friend offered me a "special ticket". It seemed they were offered to organizations who had endorsed Hillary Clinton.
There seemed to be three sections. The general public was standing in front of the stage, packed to the back of the room. Some people were sitting in the bleachers and we were standing on the side of the stage.
First Lady Michelle Obama was preceded by speeches from various NH politicians and candidates. Finally, at around 12:30, she was introduced. She entered to a cheering, happy crowd.
The First Lady, affectionately known as #FLOTUS (First Lady Of The United States) spoke about our nation coming together. She talked about the importance of acting on climate. Then the tone changed.
Mrs. Obama carefully and deliberately unfolded all the reasons to stop Republican candidate Donald Trump. She spoke about the impact he was already having on playgrounds and in schools around the country as students struggle with the messages that divide them.
While she spoke several women spontaneously called out to her in encouragement. Little girls around the room, who had missed a day of school for this educational moment, listened in the arms of their parents, lifted up to view this woman of powerful words.
The crowd listened intently as she described the kind of women our girls need to see and how lifting them up, offering them positive role models, would shape their future during the next 4-8 years. She wrapped up with her now famous quote, "When the go low, we go high."
She thanked the crowd for the beautiful day of bright and colorful autumn leaves that she had driven through on her way to the university.
As the First Lady stepped off the stage, I snapped this shot. The woman literally glows with positivity. Her face beams with a smile of genuine happiness. The affection she has for people was reflected back upon her as she approached the crowd. Hands reached out to shake her hand, or just to touch her. Selfies were requested and she made her way around the room, taking the time to reach as many people as she could.
Regardless of political choice or party affiliation, FLOTUS Obama's presence will be missed. She has always shown grace and poise under pressure, guiding her girls into womanhood with a presence and demeanor any parent would be proud to exhibit. More importantly, her good will and hope for the future has raised us all a little higher, leaving us a phrase not soon forgotten, words to live by.