You might think, since I was at the Wells Fargo Arena in Philadelphia for four days at the Democratic National Convention, I might have seen and heard all the speeches by all the political rock stars parading through, but I was too busy screaming. I look forward to watching Hillary accept the nomination to be president and President Obama’s capstone speech on YouTube with a glass of wine and my dog at my feet.

No hard feelings, though. The rest of the world saw a four-day shimmery and brilliantly choreographed production that showed the bright side of humanity. People were given a dose of hope and the American spirit, so I’m glad that I’m exhausted and emotionally drained. That means I did my job as whip captain, but for the record, the convention in Philly was no glamorous affair for delegates by any stretch of the imagination. It was a major battle – and it was thrilling to be a foot soldier.

The Maine delegation stayed in a dumpy hotel near the airport with carpet so stained and worn it looked like greasy tie-dyed linoleum. We were so far from the city and convention hall that getting to parties was nearly impossible, so we didn’t party. By the time we managed to exit the mobbed auditorium and navigate the vast security perimeter to leave and orchestrate an Uber ride or the bus system “home,” we were hitting the pillow every night after 2 a.m. and setting the alarm for 6:45 so not to miss the mandatory 7 o’clock breakfast.

“Breakfast” in political-speak means listening to more speeches by people like Corey Booker without a teleprompter or time limit, the price we paid to be handed a precious highly coveted credential to attain access to the arena. Tolerating just one long-winded speech in the morning was not enough, sometimes it was four of five such speeches – all before your third cup of coffee. And don’t let me forget to tell you some other time about all the speech-like questions we got from the audience along with booing by the anti-establishment wing of the party.

To be in your seat in time to vote at 4:30 p.m. meant beginning the trek to the arena no later than 2:30, and we spent hours on buses in traffic in high heat. If you wanted to both vote and see the keynote speeches by heavyweights, it meant being there for the prime time television slots at 10 p.m. and beyond. In between, the time was filled by testament and testimony of every walk of life in this country. Exquisite displays of personal triumph, searing stories of agony and loss, and rousing words of encouragement were sprinkled with entertainment.

My throat is sore from yelling, the palm of my left hand split from clapping and my head hurts from all the drama, but I wouldn’t trade being in the arena this week for anything.

Being a “whip captain” meant I took orders from a commander up the chain in the Clinton campaign and passed them on to eight Clinton delegates. I made no decisions of any import and that was fine with me. It also meant I got a nifty button that says “Whip Captain” with the Hillary logo. My job was to make sure our delegates were in their seats and voting (by screaming) and waving signs and screaming specific things at specific times.

When they start anti-Hillary taunts, our response was immediate: “Hil-la-ry! Hil-la-ry! Hil-la-ry!” at the top of our voices.

When they protested our military brass, our response was strong: “USA!” “USA!” “USA!”

And when they went low, we went higher: “Love trumps hate! Love trumps hate! Love trumps hate!”

A sign of every successful convention of course is a massive sign strategy that makes good TV and we rocked the signs. “We got Michelle” signs, “We love Joe” signs, “Bill” signs, “Chelsea” signs, “Clinton/Kaine” signs and tons more – all supposed to be raised at different times and on cue. We even tried to coordinate alternating signs with fellow delegates across the arena, alternating “Stronger” and “Together” signs.

All this sign management and screaming from every delegate from the confines of his or her cramped stadium seat where we housed our bags and snacks and phones.

It didn’t feel like I was part of a historic moment much of the time I was nominating the first woman president, it felt like hard work – like putting on a big family holiday dinner.

Everyone enjoys a well-set table and delicious food and drink in a clean, decorated house. It would be easy to think for a moment that handsome turkey dressed and roasted himself, or that the dishes will throw themselves in the shower and jump back in the cupboard but we know there’s an army of worker-bees who make that happen. They work hard at everything because they can’t help it.

It’s in their genes and what they do. They plan and they work and stuff gets done.

It was hard work being in the arena nominating Hillary Clinton to be president, and it should be hard.

Cynthia Dill is a civil rights lawyer and former state senator. She can be contacted at:

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Twitter: dillesquirew