President Bush gave Koizumi a Segway!

Bush was riding the vehicle when he met Koizumi outside the Kyoto State Guest House in the ancient Japanese capital, a Japanese pool report said.

Urged by Bush to give it a whirl, Koizumi took a brief 1 metre (3 ft) ride, and cried out, “Oh, very good.”

Bush told the prime minister he’d given his father, former President George Bush, and mother, Barbara, Segways for their birthdays, adding he felt Koizumi was almost one of the family.

The close ties between the two allies were on public display later in the day when Bush told a news conference: “Prime Minister Koizumi is one of my best friends in the international community. I know the prime minister well.

“I trust his judgement. I admire his leadership.”

The scooters can be tricky to ride. Bush fell off one two years ago but managed to land on his feet. It is also illegal to ride them on public byways in Japan.

The transition to that last sentence wasn’t very good, was it? But the news story is cute nonetheless :)

In other news, Koizumi made an appearance in Yakitate!! Japan episode 44, which I watched last night. Cracked me up! “Oh, there’s a lion 5km ahead, Kazuma!” XD