|Published:||Nov 15, 2010 5:12 PM EST|
|Updated:||Nov 15, 2010 2:12 PM EST|
THE VILLAGES, Fla. (AP) - Former President George W. Bush doesn't miss much about the White House - except the pampering.
In a rally Saturday at The Villages, a sprawling central Florida retirement community, Bush reminisced about the luxuries of America's highest office, including the convenience of Air Force One and never waiting in traffic jams.
He recalled, in the days after leaving office, being told by his wife Laura that doing dishes was his new domestic policy agenda. And he described how odd it felt taking his dog Barney for a post-presidential walk, plastic bag in hand.
"I really don't miss much about the presidency," Bush told a crowd of more than 3,000 people. "I miss being pampered."
The 43rd president said, most of all, he missed being commander in chief of the U.S. military.
"Imagine what it was like to return the salute of men and women," he said in his 30-minute speech.
Bush also described his "love-at-first-sight" moment when he first met Laura, and he spoke at length about the 9/11 attacks.
"I still hear the voices of the loved ones searching for survivors," he said.
The Villages is heavily Republican and many in the crowd waved American flags or wore hats noting their military service. Some who gathered to hear Bush speak said he has been unfairly blamed for the country's problems.
"I think all presidents get a bum rap," said Linda Zwick, 60. "I think he made decisions to keep our country safe."
Bush is on a national tour promoting his new memoir, "Decision Points."
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