This Week In Pool Reports

The poolers take to the road — who knew Vietnam looks so much like Florida? Silva is back on pool duty and he does not disappoint, but how hard is it to make Bush bustin’ a move amusing?

  • “The motorcade left the Sheraton at approximately 6:38 for the 10-minute drive to the International Conference Center. Police had blocked off the entire route, causing mammoth — though, to an American, jarringly well-behaved — traffic jams. Hundreds of Vietnamese lined both sides of the road as the motorcade went by, with many snapping pictures of the passing vehicles. Approaching the conference center, the cars drove under hammer-and-sickles, made from yellow and red lightbulbs, that had been strung across the road.” — Yochi Dreazen, Wall Street Journal

  • “We were able, before departure from the university, to watch an agent at the last minute trying to rearrange the motorcade. She grew nearly frantic in dispatching orders to the various drivers to back up, turn around, and in general reverse course, but she accomplished her mission in time. The president left without apparent incident; the rest of us followed as usual.” — Jim Gerstenzang, Los Angeles Times

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  • “A waiter in white jacket brought to the president and PM glasses that appeared to hold white wine. They clinked; the president then walked back to his table holding his glass. He didn’t appear to sip.” — Gerstenzang

  • “The grounds of Istana are long and green, rolling up a hill with a golf course carved out of it, to the lovely white palace. Two stories mainly, an alabaster spread of colonial ambitions. Two tennis courts on the grounds, if the table-top model of the palace in the pool hold is a faithful replica. Josh Deckard also informed us that he had shaved between the last outing from the Shangri-La and this one. He’s looking damn smart.” — Mark Silva, Chicago Tribune

  • “Route was closed to all but us, past the Raffles Secondary Girls’ School, past hotels and apartment buildings, tropical trees all the way, with an occasional onlooker at a street-corner and a paneltruck with a large sign that read: Dip Me in Chocolate and Call Me Dessert.” — Silva

  • “Down through a commercial strip, past Exxon and other gas stations, and then more apartments — ‘Looks like Florida here,’ one photographer was heard to say. Brickell Avenue maybe. Without the gators.” — Silva

  • Bush wore a charcoal suit, the first lady a pastel green pant suit, and they stood in a line two o’clock from the ensemble, which struck up its pots and bell-like xylos and a flute in one guy’s mouth. I’d give it a 9.5, but you sure couldn’t dance to it. Then, accepting their smiling entreaties, Bush gave it a try. He got down on his knees in front of one of the xylos, picked up one hammer and played a recurring theme that sounded practiced. It actually had a pattern to it. He smiled proudly at the pool.” — Silva

  • “After embracing former President Bill Clinton on his way to the podium for remarks at the groundbreaking on The Mall for the Martin Luther King Jr. National Memorial, the President thanked his predecessor for having signed the memorial legislation. Acknowledging the robust applause, the President adlibbed, ‘It sounds to me like they haven’t forgotten you yet. He’s become, you know, like my fourth brother.'” — Finlay Lewis, Copley

  • “‘The elections are over,’ Bush said. “The problems haven’t gone away…” He assured the senators, he said, that ‘we’ll cooperate… To solve common problems.’ There is a great opportunity for us to show the country that Republicans and Democrats are equally patriotic,’ Bush said. Noting that Reid hails from the West, Bush said: ‘We tend to speak the same language.’ Reid concurred: ‘The election’s over.’ Seems they have this nailed down.” — Silva