President and Mrs. Obama hosted the distinguished representatives of various democrats and dictators in the East Room this afternoon. Several lambs and countless shrimp lost their lives.
From the pool report.
Diplomatic Reception: The East Room.
The scene: 27-member USMC jazz orchestra in the foyer playing selections from the cocktalian repertoire.Some 200 diplomatic guests meeting and greeting in the foyer and the East Room. Guest list composed of chiefs of mission and guests or charges d’affaires if ambassadors were elsewhere.
East Room action: Two tables laden w/ one-bite lamb chops, shrimp, salmon and assorted nibbles. Scattering of small tables, each w/ six chairs. Two bars. Wall-to-wall dark suits, punctuated by colorful traditional national attire. Air kisses, hugs, two-handed handshakes and occasional senatorials (left hand gripping elbow, right hand grasping hand). Guests taking turns taking pictures of each other.
President Obama and the first lady enter at 5 p.m. and step up to podium on the south wall. Mrs. Obama was wearing a dull yellow sleeve-less dress. The president, occasionally referring to his written text on the podium, welcomes guests.
His kicker: “I’m mindful of that old saying about diplomacy —- that sometimes more can be accomplished at one party than 20 serious conversations. (Laughter.) So have a wonderful evening, have a wonderful party, and I look forward to all that we can accomplish together, tonight and beyond.’’