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'Giddy excitement' descends upon D.C.

by Lester Holt, NBC News anchor

I'm blogging from my BlackBerry on the ride from Reagan National Airport to our Washington studio. It's normally a 15-minute ride – but not today. Several bridges from Virginia into Washington, D.C. are already closed, and we're getting our first taste of the security and safety net that has fallen over Washington in advance of Tuesday's inauguration. The driver is not amused as we sit in traffic.

Across the river I see the tents and port-a-potties set up for the big concert at the Lincoln Memorial. I just heard from a Chicago friend who has already staked out her seat for the show. She's "just sitting in the cold waiting." In the airport and on the plane there was almost giddy excitement among those making the trip here for the inauguration.

Al Roker and I – who happened to be on the same flight – posed for a few pictures with passengers. I'll be anchoring tonight's program just across from the Capitol. Chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd will join me tonight to set the scene for this historic week, and to tell us about the President elect's day. I hope you'll join me later (assuming we ever get across this bridge) for NBC Nightly News.