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SUMMIT NOTEBOOK: Yeltsin Sets Conditions For Happiness

April 4, 1993

Undated (AP) _ VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) - Boris Yeltsin took a ride on a boat named for a Japanese god of pleasure, but even that wasn’t enough to make his summit with Bill Clinton a truly happy one.

″Happiness is something rather general. Happiness is something that doesn’t occur without women. And there were no women there at all. You understand,″ Yeltsin said, responding to a reporter’s question on whether he was happy with his talks with Clinton.

Yeltsin did make one woman happy during his stay in Vancouver.

Barbara McDougall, Canada’s Minister of External Affairs, was clearly pleased when Yeltsin admonished a Canadian businessman for taking the seat of a lady during a cruise around Vancouver harbor.

Yeltsin the gentleman all but ordered the unhappy businessman to surrender his seat to McDougall, who declined and remained standing.


The tense political situation back in Russia cast an unhappy shadow over Yeltsin’s Saturday night dinner with Clinton and some of their closest associates at a Vancouver restaurant.

Yeltsin began to frown as Clinton described, over their salmon and squash dinner, an initiative to be headed by the vice president.

As Clinton continued to explain the project, Yeltsin’s face grew darker and he began to grumble.

Clinton and the members of his party were at a loss to fathom Yeltsin’s growing discontent until a member of the U.S. party realized that Yeltsin thought Clinton was referring to Russian Vice President Alexander Rutskoi, once a Yeltsin ally who has joined with the opposition.

Yeltsin immediately brightened when he was told the U.S. initiative was to be led by Vice President Al Gore.


While President Clinton was up early for a jog and church services, the Russian delegation was more than pleased that they had nothing on their schedule Sunday morning.

Clinton took an early 30-minute jog through a waterfront park before attending church. To a shouted query on why the Russian president wasn’t with him, Clinton responded: ″He’s got more sense.″

But both presidents had reason to cheer when they awoke Sunday morning. The cold rain that greeted their arrival the day before was gone and rays of sunshine broke through the clouds.

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