President Obama has been enjoying a leisurely vacation of shaved ice and long dinners in Hawaii, as well as lots of golf.
Today, another head of government in the Pacific joined Obama on the course. New Zealand Prime Minister John Key, who owns a home in Hawaii, the prime minister’s teenaged son Max and White House aide Marvin Nicholson hit the Kaneohe Bay golf course, and the media was allowed a rare glimpse of the commander in chief in golf mode.
Just before 10 a.m. local time, the press pool was escorted to the second green to watch the world leaders play.
“The foursome pulled up in two golf carts with the president and the prime minister riding together. Obama, in a lavender golf shirt, khaki pants and khaki baseball cap, grabbed two clubs from his bag before striding toward the green. The group joked as they golfed and appeared to be playing a fairly casual round,” reads the pool report.
“Obama initially putted from just off the green, announcing that he was opting to putt. When he left his ball well short of the flag, Obama said, ‘I guess I should have chipped it after all.’ The president’s second putt rolled close to the hole, and he opted for a gimme shot rather than putting a third time.”
Obama high-fived the prime minister’s son after a successful putt and “ribbed” Nicholson when he missed one. White House trip director Nicholson is the most constant player in Obama’s golf excursions.
“As the pool was led away from the green, Obama was joking with the prime minister about the challenge of beating the younger players in their group,” the report said.
The pool was then escorted to a food court at a nearby mall. Obama traditionally has the press left at an eatery of some sort out of sight of his golf game.
On New Year’s Day, Obama golfed for more than five hours. He had similarly long games with his friends on Sunday and Monday, and put in six hours on the course the day after Christmas. On Christmas Eve he only played for four and a half hours, but played through a rainstorm.
The Obamas return to Washington on Sunday.