Earlier today, Barack Obama, together with 6 of the world's most powerful leaders (but certainly not Vladimir Putin) congregated in the Bavarian town of Krun where they will for the next two days hunker down at the luxurious Scholss Elmau for the latest G-7 meeting, covering an agenda dealing with climate change, global extremism, and of course, solving the Ukraine crisis (with or without instructions from George Soros on how to proceed).
Obama, however, decided to keep it "folksy" and the lame duck president, content with the direction the world is going, pulled a page right out of National Lampoons European vacation and kicked it back.
As Reuters reports, joking that he wanted to buy a pair of lederhosen leather shorts, U.S. President Barack Obama drank beer and mixed with Bavarians in a light-hearted start to his trip to Germany.
Introduced by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Obama spoke warmly to a crowd of men in feather-plumed green hats and women in corseted "dirndl" dresses in the picture-postcard village of Kruen, at the foot of snow-speckled Alpine mountains.
"Gruess Gott!" Obama began, which literally translates as "greetings from god" but is the typical Bavarian greeting instead of "good day."
"I have to admit that I forgot to bring my lederhosen but I'm going to see if I can buy some while I'm here," a smiling Obama told locals who were swigging beer and munching on 'weisswurst,' or traditional Bavarian sausage, and pretzels.
The U.S. president, who is in Bavaria for a summit of the Group of Seven (G7) industrial nations, said he had hoped the meeting hosted by Merkel would coincide with Munich's annual Oktoberfest folk festival, which pays homage to beer.
"But then again there's never a bad day for a beer and a weisswurst and I can't think of a better place to come to celebrate the enduring friendship between the German and American people," he added.
He later sat down with Merkel and the locals in Bavarian dress to sample the beer and told reporters: "It was a very fine beer. I wish I was staying."
ABC adds more visuals: "Slugging back beer and sausages, President Barack Obama on Sunday celebrated decades of U.S. friendship with Germany over recent challenges and said the country "is proof that conflicts can end and great progress is possible."
Understandably, the issue of Obama spying on his closest "ally" Merkel for years courtesy of the NSA only came up in passing:
"Although it is true we sometimes have differences of opinion today from time to time, but still the United States of America is our friend, our partner and indeed an essential partner with whom we cooperate very closely," Merkel said through a translator after addressing Obama as "dear Barack." ''We cooperate closely because this is in our mutual interest. We cooperate because we need it. We cooperate because we want it."
As long as the NSA continues to have a transcript of every Merkel conversation, because we know everything that is going on in secret.
And then on to more important things: "The G-7 meeting at the Schloss Elmau resort is expected to be dominated by discussions of the West's response to the clashes between Ukraine and pro-Russian forces. Russian President Vladimir Putin was ousted from the group last year over his aggressive moves on the former Soviet state."
They will do so in the grandeur and opulence of the Schloss (or castle) Elmau, situated in the foothills of the German Alps. From ABC:
Nestled in a national forest, Schloss Elmau, a hundred-year-old castle turned high-end, secluded resort, will host the G7 festivities this weekend. "It's a huge honor," Nikolai Bloyd, general manger of Schloss Elmau since 2010, said. "The spotlight of the world is coming down to look at this beautiful area of Germany, this picturesque alpine valley in the Bavarian Alps."
The German government has rented out the entire hotel. World leaders including Obama, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and British Prime Minister David Cameron will stay in the 162 sleeping rooms with picturesque views of the mountains and valleys of the Bavarian Alps.
All of the meetings and events will take place at Schloss Elmau, including a concert to be held in the resort's large concert hall. And then there's the food. The hotel normally has nine restaurants for guests to pick from, including Luce d'Oro, which received One Michelin Star, an elite rating for restaurants.
The leaders will dine on a carefully crafted menu developed by the German government and Mario Corti, the chef of Luce d'Oro. Corti has experience cooking for dozens of VIPs, including Prince Charles, Madonna, the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Bill Gates. The menu is top-secret but will feature regional cuisine made from local ingredients.
Obama, who is a fitness enthusiast, will have access to two fitness centers on site, and if anyone has time for relaxation between the jam-packed meetings, the resort features a 70,000-square foot spa, including five outdoor heated swimming pools and 20 saunas and steam rooms.
Security has been tight at the venue since the end of May with police scanning every person and every item entering the grounds -- including the fruits and vegetables delivered for meals.
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And while the world leaders are boondoggling, busy avoiding the elephant in the room - because if they really wanted to contain Putin shouldn't the Russian leader be present at the summit, instead of shying away from him like a teenage schoolgirl - thousands of anti-G7 protesters took to the streets of Germesch-Partenkirchen, Bavaria, on Saturday to protest against the summit. Activists carried anti-G7 banners and flags and chanted slogans. The G7 nations - Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the US - will meet in Bavaria, Germany for a two-day summit.
The German Taxpayers Federation believes the summit may cost the country €360 million, three times the official figure of €130 million. Which is also more than the last Greek payment to the IMF which the country could not make, thus pushing it over the edge and just days away from a full-on sovereign default.