Look, I get it. When you retire after eight years as president of the United States, you get super chill, since the weight of the country is now on someone else's shoulders. Obama has proved that time and time again in 2017 as he's flitted from the British Virgin Islands to French Polynesia, finding time to kitesurf and relax on yachts. But now Obama is getting back to business — he's just sticking to that super chill vibe. Photos of Obama in Milan might have given the impression that he's extending his vacation, but he's there to speak about a serious subject.
Coming off the heels of receiving the 2017 John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award in Boston, Obama flew to Milan, where he will speak about climate change during the keynote speech at the Seeds&Chips Global Food Innovation Summit. He also reportedly met with former Prime Minister Matteo Renzi and attended a dinner hosted by the Institute for International Political Studies.
Of course, some snaps of Obama made their way online as he did some sightseeing throughout the city. He reportedly checked out the Ambrosian Library, which is also home to art gallery Pinacoteca Ambrosiana, and the Duomo di Milano (the Milan Cathedral), before heading to dinner with Renzi.
From the sunglasses to the unbuttoned shirt, Obama's still got his vacation vibe down. He waved to onlookers who had gathered to catch a glimpse of the 44th president, which some people pointed out felt like a "rock star welcome."
The Seeds&Chips Global Food Innovation Summit is an international food innovation conference that explores new technology and solutions for food scarcity, climate change's effect on food resources, protein consumption, and more. It changes the way "food is produced, processed, distributed, communicated and consumed," according to its website.
"Thanks to President Obama’s participation at Seeds&Chips, the city of Milano once again plays the leading role in the creation of food policies at an international level," the press release announcing Obama's designation as the guest of honor at the event states.
That's some serious business, and Obama is well qualified to speak on it. His look might be relaxed, but rest assured the rest of him isn't. Just the day before, he used his Courage Award speech to call for courage in standing against regressive bills like the American Health Care Act.
I hope that current members of Congress recall that it actually doesn't take a lot of courage to aid those who are already powerful, already comfortable, already influential. But it does require some courage to champion the vulnerable and the sick and the infirm, those who often have no access to the corridors of power.
So, yep, he's still got his same vibe as always.