Sun, sea and kitesurfing for Obama after leaving White House

Left: Mr Obama relaxing with Mr Branson on a boat off the coast of Moskito Island, which is owned by the Virgin Group founder. Below: Mr Obama spent two days learning kitesurfing, in which people ride a board while being pulled behind a kite, Mr Bran
Mr Obama relaxing with Mr Branson on a boat off the coast of Moskito Island, which is owned by the Virgin Group founder.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE
Left: Mr Obama relaxing with Mr Branson on a boat off the coast of Moskito Island, which is owned by the Virgin Group founder. Below: Mr Obama spent two days learning kitesurfing, in which people ride a board while being pulled behind a kite, Mr Bran
Mr Obama spent two days learning kitesurfing, in which people ride a board while being pulled behind a kite, Mr Branson said in a blog post.PHOTO: REUTERS

NEW YORK • For anyone wondering how former president Barack Obama is adjusting to life under the Trump administration, know this: He seems to be doing just fine.

Mr Obama and his wife Michelle took a vacation to the British Virgin Islands, where they were hosted by Mr Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group.

The billionaire and adventurer owns 48ha Moskito Island, which is part of the archipelago.

On Tuesday, Mr Branson published a blog post, along with photos and a video showing Mr Obama, a lifelong surfer, learning kitesurfing.

Yes, the man seems to be doing just fine.

Mr Branson wrote that Mr Obama spent two days learning the increasingly popular sport, also known as kiteboarding, in which people ride a board while being pulled behind a kite.

"Being the former president of America, there was lots of security around, but Barack was able to really relax and get into it," he wrote.

Mr Branson himself was trying to learn a similar sport, foilboarding, which uses a modified board that rises a few feet above the water.

He wrote that he challenged the former president over which of them would succeed first.

Mr Obama triumphed, he said, by riding the waves for 100m. "After all he has done for the world, I couldn't begrudge him his well- deserved win," said Mr Branson.

Meanwhile, former vice-president Joe Biden announced details of his post-White House work.

He will lead the University of Pennsylvania's Penn Biden Centre for Diplomacy and Global Engagement, a new effort "focused principally on diplomacy, foreign policy and national security", the university announced on Tuesday.

Mr Biden said in a statement: "The Penn Biden Centre and I will be engaging with Penn's wonderful students while partnering its eminent faculty and global centres to convene world leaders, develop and advance smart policy, and impact the national debate about how America can continue to lead in the 21st century."

NYTIMES, REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 09, 2017, with the headline 'Sun, sea and kitesurfing for Obama after leaving White House'. Print Edition | Subscribe