Today, I met Mitt Romney and the President of the United States, George Bush. No big deal, right? Just another normal day in the life of Amber Anderson. Yeah, right.
Last Wednesday night, my friend Chance called me to ask if I wanted to volunteer for the event which would host President Bush and Mitt Romney. Naturally, I said yes. It was incredible. Alyssa and I drove to Salt Lake at 9AM. We toured the gardens of the Stewart's home and looked over the beautiful city. The gardens had an amazing view of the Utah Capitol building and the Salt Lake City Temple. Around 10, all volunteers and caterers were sent out so that the Secret Service could sweep the house and gardens. So many secret service men and other undercover officials came in to secure the location. It was seriously right out of a movie.
While we were waiting for the security sweep to be completed, we received assignments and instructions. I was assigned to the Registration table (conveniently located under a white canopy in the shade, which was sooo nice). When we reentered the premise, we quickly organized and began to register people. All kinds of prominent, wealthy people came. I loved talking to the people. They were so generous and willing to help out the Republican Party. It was great to be with so many good friends and to be united in a good cause.
Soon, the festivities began. Govenor Mitt Romney stood up first to speak. President Bush was running behind because he spoke at the Air Force Commencement and afterwards spoke to each graduate individually. Mitt spoke and it was great. He never ceases to impress me. Sometimes I wish he involved more impromptu speeches while he was running--he is so personable and easy to like--the general public just didn't see this. He spoke of the importance of joining forces between Senator McCain, the Republican Presidential Nominee. He is such a quality person and I learned how funny he is. I love how confident and comfortable he is in groups. He even took questions from the audience.
President Bush arrived shortly after Mitt's speech. After hearing Govenor Romney speak, I wondered how he was elected (I mean, I voted for him, but Mitt is SO well spoken), but I was very impressed. President Bush was hilarious. I mean SO FUNNY!!! I couldn't believe it. He laughed at his own jokes, too...which is always funny. He began by speaking of the importance of us to support John McCain in the general election. He said that he truly believed McCain could win. He also said that he thought the Detroit Tigers would win the national league in baseball, and that didn't work, so he wasn't very good at predicting things, which was so funny. He spoke on his belief in God and how he has recognized the millions of prayers offered by Americans for his safety and good decision making. People in the audience began to clap, but he held up his hand to silence them. He continued to state the absolute right that all individuals should have to freedom and how it is our responsibility to guarantee this freedom to all whenever possible. It was powerful. It really was.
He continued to speak of how the past 7.5 years of his term has strengthened his relationship with his wife and how incredible she is. He also spoke of his daughter's recent wedding and told how he broke down "blubbering" down the isle. He is excited for grandchildren.
I know I have casually joked on the President's speech giving capacity, but I was extremely impressed. I wish I could recall more of his funny jokes and inspirational stories. After he closed his speech, he walked to a disabled child and gave away his American flag pin. He shook peoples hands and asked if they knew his relatives in varied places. He showed concern and gratitude. I'll say it again, I am impressed.
Before Govenor Romney left, I called to him and asked if I could have a picture with him. He had just been given a book by an indivdual which explained how "protestants view Mormons." He accepted the book and gently told them they are spending too much time researching these issues for the book. It was funny. The guy looked shocked. When I asked to take a picture with Govenor Romney, he was leaving the event. I called, "Govenor Romney, can I take a picture with you?" He ignored others and looked at me and said he would. I told him I had traveled to Nevada and helped with the caucus there. He looked and me and sincerely told me thank you and he appreciated my help. Governor Romney was truly great and I love his character. I'm excited to see what job he receives in McCain's administration if McCain is elected. He said he won't be VP but will have another role. I'm excited to see!
The day was unforgettable. I'm so glad Chance asked if I was able to volunteer. Great friends made it so much more memorable. Wow. What an experience!