Golf and tweets mainstays of Trump vacation

President Donald Trump arriving at his Florida golf club, all set to welcome US Coast Guard members he had invited to play golf on Friday.
President Donald Trump arriving at his Florida golf club, all set to welcome US Coast Guard members he had invited to play golf on Friday.PHOTO: REUTERS

WASHINGTON • President Donald Trump is spending his winter vacation at his exclusive Mar-a-Lago Club but he is not taking a break from two of his favourite things - golf and Twitter.

Mr Trump flew to his Florida resort on Air Force One a week ago, and his days since have tended to follow the same routine.

Shortly before 9am, the presidential convoy leaves Mar-a-Lago and heads for the Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach.

The ride takes about 10 minutes, with the motorcade generally stopping for red lights along the way.

Mr Trump's supporters occasionally gather on the route brandishing signs such as "Trump 2020" and protesters also make an appearance.

His golf partners have included his son, Eric, and several professional golfers including Jim Herman, Daniel Berger, Justin Thomas and Bryson DeChambeau.

On Friday, Mr Trump invited about 60 members of the US Coast Guard to play golf at his club. TV images showed him shaking hands and taking pictures with Coast Guard members while wearing a white shirt, black pants, white shoes and a red "USA" hat.

The only day Mr Trump has not played golf during his Florida break was on Christmas Day.

After lunch at the club's Grill Room on Thursday, Mr Trump gave an impromptu interview to Mr Michael Schmidt of The New York Times, speaking on a variety of subjects for about half an hour without any aides present.

Asked how far he was driving the ball these days, the 71-year-old US leader said it "gets shorter every year".

Besides the daily golf outings, Mr Trump has left Mar-a-Lago on two other occasions - for a Christmas Eve mass and for a visit to a local fire station. His tweet salvos generally come in the morning - before golf - and in the evening.

There have been nearly 40 tweets or re-tweets during the past week on a wide range of subjects: North Korea, the FBI, the economy and the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, to name just a few.

On Christmas Eve, Mr Trump and his wife, Melania, fielded calls from children around the country expressing wishes for Santa Claus.

Mr Trump also held a video conference on Christmas Eve with soldiers deployed overseas, telling them they were doing "an incredible job".

The US President is scheduled to return to Washington after a New Year's Eve party at Mar-a-Lago.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on December 31, 2017, with the headline 'Golf and tweets mainstays of Trump vacation'. Print Edition | Subscribe