The President of the U.S. does not travel lightly. His
entourage of more than 900 staffers, security personnel, several Cabinet
members, government officials and press accompanied him on his 22-hour historic
trip to Jamaica April 9-10, the first for a sitting U.S. President since Ronald
Reagan visited in 1982.
And then there was the equipment fleet that accompanied
POTUS, including the fortified presidential limo nicknamed The Beast, Air
Force One and Two, several Sikorsky
helicopters, cargo planes and three nine-passenger black SUVs.
His busy schedule included a 20-minute tour of the Bob
Marley Museum in Kingston as "One Love" played in the background,
meetings with Caricom leaders, a town hall meeting with Caribbean youth who
cheered when he delivered his spot-on Patois greeting "Wah gwan, Jamaica" (translation---what's
up? What's happening?)
He laid a wreath at National Heroes Park, where a day
earlier officials had hustled out the 40-plus crab vendors who have plied their
trade there for years as part of the
cleanup effort in Kingston to get ready for the presidential visit.
Obama even made time for a signature lightning bolt photo op
with Jamaican world record holder Usain Bolt.
When a Rastafrian asked the commander in chief if he would
become ganja's champion, Obama was circumspect, saying "I do not foresee,
any time soon, Congress changing the law at a national basis."