The Obamas’ first diplomatic reception, the president’s sister comes to town, and diplomatic nuptials of note
By Gail Scott
The Obamas’ White House reception for Washington’s huge diplomatic corps was a gracious invitation even though the late July “command performance” meant that many envoys and their families had to change much anticipated home leave or summer vacation plans to be there.
Japanese Ambassador Ichiro Fujisaki and his wife Yoriko were originally leaving for Tokyo on July 27, the date of the first “Diplomatic Do,” but the consummate diplomats changed their flight to the next day in order to join the long line of colleagues waiting to have their pictures taken with Barack and Michele Obama (who was dressed in red, white and … black!).
“We thought it was impressive that the first couple was welcoming each envoy so cordially,” Amb. Fujisaki reported, “Yoriko and I were able to feel the very warm atmosphere of the Obama White House. We both wore traditional Japanese kimono and appreciated delicious Japanese dishes as well. We felt very much at home. Our only hope is that the White House will always remain open and friendly as we experienced it that evening.”