March 16, 1997 in Nation/World

It’s The Thought That Counts

Associated Press

Too bad the prince didn’t call ahead.

The only “get well” flowers to come through the main entrance to the Bethesda Naval Hospital for President Clinton on Saturday were from the Saudi royal family and the country’s defense minister, Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz.

They spared no expense.

The four arrangements - so massive that they had to be wheeled in one at a time - each stood 3 feet high, 3 feet around and together held at least 500 perfectly formed roses accented by exotic white orchids, fragrant lilies and tiny hydrangea blossoms.

They never made it past the lobby.

Clinton, recovering for a second day from knee surgery, has notoriously sensitive allergies and White House aides didn’t dare bring the flowers anywhere near his suite in the hospital compound.

By day’s end, the posies still sat parked in a closed, dark room off the reception area - several buildings away from where Clinton was recuperating.

A uniformed naval aide was keeping them watered.

© Copyright 1997 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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