Fw: Pool Report #1

From: George Condon [mailto:xxx@email.com]
Sent: Wednesday, July 01, 2015 11:01 AM
To: Velz, Peter T. EOP; xxx@email.com
Subject: Pool Report #1

White House pool report #1

Tourists taking photos

After four decades of deprivation, White House tourists were allowed today to do that most cherished of touristy things – take pictures. Many even found themselves fulfilling a dream they may not have known they had and could take pictures of the pool taking pictures of them. Let the record show that the visitors of July 1, 2015 really enjoyed their liberation.

Those arriving at 9:55 a.m. when the pool descended on the scene were greeted by a video of the First Lady informing them of the new policy. “Let me get a shot of that,” exclaimed May-May Horcasitas, originally of Hong Kong and now living in South Beach, Fla. She was taking pictures on her phone. After capturing an image of the video, she turned to the Obamas’ two family dogs, both sitting obediently as if to pose for the historic photographs. At about that point, the First Lady was seen on the video dramatically ripping up a “No Photos” sign. “One more, one more,” said Kathy Teachenor of Ojai, Calif.

Other visitors were taking pictures of the sign that said “Photography is Encouraged. But please remember to turn off your flash and no video recording or streaming.” Lisa Ananager of Hampton, Va., was taking pictures on her HTC Touch phone. She was particularly enthused about a shot of the garden with the Washington Monument in the background. She is a Latin teacher to 9th and 12th graders.

In the East Room, Michael Labrecque of Palm Harbor, Fla., was posing his sons Madison, 11, and Mason, 9, for a photo while wife Melinda watched on. “This is amazing,” he said. “I am very happy they changed the rule. I’m taking as many as I can.”

In the Green Room, Tina Pucci of San Francisco was snapping away as sons Tony, 9, and Emilio, 10, posed, and husband Michael, a butcher, watched. “We just realized they changed the rules,” she said. “It’s great.”

In the State Dining Room, Kim Kesler of Los Angeles watched as daughter Chloe took pictures of the Abraham Lincoln portrait. “She is taking a lot of pictures,” said her mother. “She won’t let go of the camera. This is awesome.” Also in the State Dining Room, Korey Richardson, 47, of San Jose, was excited about his pictures. “This is my first time here,” he said. “I’m taking tons of pictures, at least 30 so far. I’ve already uploaded some to Facebook friends.”

A highlight, just may have been the selfies visitors were taking with the bust of George Washington outside the State Dining Room. Caitlyn Richardson, 11, and Chloe Richardson, 13, were snapping away and immediately posting them on Instagram. They laughed when asked if they thought George Washington could have grasped the notion of selfies or Instagram. All they knew, they said, was “This is fun.” Caitlyn is entering the 7th grade while her sister is entering high school.  They also posed in front of what was a particularly popular photo, standing in front of the portrait of John F. Kennedy.

It was in the State Dining Room that several tourists couldn’t get enough pictures of the pool photographers taking their pictures.

George Condon, National Journal

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