Covering a President is always interesting and always a pain. Thursday, I took the nice drive north of Raleigh to the little sleepy town of Franklinton. In that little town a giant in the world of enzymes and ethanol lives. Can I tell you about the difficulties of explaining something as complicated as this is in a minute and thirty seconds! I'm no science guy to say the least so it takes some great reporting for me to understand it!
Anywho, regardless of politics, it is indeed an honor to be that close to any world leader. What's amazing is the amount of security. Our technical crew had to have our live trucks and cables in place starting at 7:00am. President Bush didn't even arrive in North Carolina until 10:45am! Since I was not in charge of setting up the equipment, I made the 45 minute drive and arrived in Franklinton around 10:00am. As I approached the entrance to Novozymes, I reached a checkpoint. They told me we had to take a detour to the other side of the plant. It ended up being a seven minute drive through the winding hills and farms of Franklin County. Then I reached another checkpoint where I was told to drive to another checkpoint. Once I reached the final checkpoint it was 10:20am. A 20 minute detour to get to the other side of the plant! After 20 more minutes in line, I was finally able to get on the grounds of the plant to only stand in two more lines to get credentials then head through the metal detectors.
Quite a process! Of course, once Marine One was in the air after the event we could go anywhere we wanted on the roads!
Once we got inside we were escorted to a platform in the back of the room. When the President left the room, we were held in our places for about 15 minutes as were the guests and employees.
While it may seem glamorous on television we definitely do a lot of sitting and waiting when it comes to covering the President of the United States!