Michelle Obama, the First Lady of the United States (FLOTUS), was in my town yesterday. It was her third full day in South Africa and her only one in the most beautiful place on earth. I have such undisguised pride at that fact. I am also, I admit amazed and pleased that the whole party (Michelle, her daughters and mother) were so respectful, accessible and fun. They really did take in a great deal of what Cape Town has to offer - and met some of my heros. Through the whole day, Mrs O only wore one outfit - navy pants, her turquoise Jimmy Choo flats, a gorgeous bright knit top and a Reed Krakoff jacket. And it was perfect. Because Cape Town is not a dress-up-formal kind of place. Especially not in winter.
Michelle and her party started out at the District Six museum. It is an amazing museum that tells a story of the real people, the soul, behind the appalling group areas act of the previous apartheid regime. They all stopped off at a cool (and by that I mean hipster cool, where designers and artists and stylists hang) tiny little eating spot in Woodstock for lunch. I don't know how they found out abut The Kitchen (run by Karen Dudley), but they stopped there for some lovely fresh salads and drinks before heading to my alma mater, University of Cape Town. My boss, the editor of O Magazine, Samantha Page, was lucky enough to attend that function. And like everyone who has met Mrs O on her trip to South Africa, was amazed at her oratory skills and her warmth. The Q and A was moderated by one of my all-time female power heros Mamphela Ramphele - there to Michelle's right in the group shot.
Finally, the Obama party hooked up with nobel prize-winning Desmond Tutu for some work on getting kids to exercise at the wonderful Cape Town Stadium. Not only did Michelle get down on her hands to show Tutu how to do a press up (!), but also stood eye-to-eye with football hero Matthew Booth. Now let me tell you, I have had the pleasure of meeting both Matthew and Desmond Tutu, and now I know for sure how incredibly tall Michelle Obama is! Yikes! She really is statuesque.
I really hope they had a blast in Cape Town. I hope my town showed them what we do best. And I hope they come back soon. And this time, stay a bit longer so we can see a few more outfits!