He may no longer be the President of the United States, but Barack Obama is proving that he still deserves that coolest president ever title he earned after eight years in the office. I mean, what other former President spent his first few weeks after leaving the White House shredding some waves? Check out the video that Richard Branson uploaded to his YouTube channel below.
Barack Obama got in some kitesurfing with British billionaire Richard Branson while on vacation in the British Virgin Islands last week, and there's even some good video of our former President gliding along the water! Though it looks like he might be struggling to stay upright at first, Obama holds onto his kite and manages to skim the water for a good 100 meters. And between all the extreme sports, he also goofs off a bit with Branson and shows off a massive smile at the video's end. After eight years of politics, I don't blame him for beaming from ear to ear to just be having some fun finally.
Along with the video, Richard Branson wrote up a bit about the experience of shredding some waves with a former President on his website Virgin.com. As the video denotes, Branson has challenged Barack Obama to a friendly competition to see who could last longer in a water sport that they were not familiar with. Branson trained on the foilboard and made it about 50 meters, but Obama managed to take home the win by going twice as far kitesurfing.
While you would expect most former Presidents to just want to lay back and relax for the first time in four-to-eight years once they are finally relieved of command, apparently Barack Obama couldn't wait to get back to some extreme water sports. He did grow up surrounded by the surf culture of Hawaii, after all. Richard Branson writes that one of the first things Obama told him during his visit was about how his Secret Service team had prohibited him from going surfing after he was sworn in.
Just before he became President, [Obama] had been surfing on a dangerous break in Hawaii. When he came in from an exhilarating session, the new head of his security team turned to him and said: "This will be the last time you surf for eight years." For the next eight years he didn't have the chance to surf, enjoy watersports or do many of the things he loved.
After eight years on solid ground, it's nice to see Barack get his feet wet again!