(Photo: REUTERS/Larry Downing)
President Obama has said he wishes he could "wear a fake mustache" and "wander through Tel Aviv and go to a bar and have a conversation."
The president was speaking out to Israeli Channel 2 about the loss of his anonymity ahead of his trip to Israel next week, explaining that he wished he could just be a regular tourist.
In an interview taped at the White House earlier this week, the president said, "Sometimes I have this fantasy that I can put on a disguise, wear a fake mustache and I can wander through Tel Aviv and go to a bar and have a conversation."
Obama told that he misses the "spontaneous interactions" he used to have before he became president, especially when he used to travel.
He explained, "I'd love to sit at a cafe and just hang out. The last time I was there as a senator, I still had the option of wandering through the Old City of Jerusalem. That option becomes much trickier once you're actually president."
Everywhere the president goes he must take various security precautions and is forced to have tight security around him when he travels. Everything must be planned in advance to meticulous detail.
"You can't just slip out and interact with people without having a bunch of guys with machine guns with you," he added.
He insisted that he hoped to find as many opportunities to just interact directly with regular Israeli people on his upcoming visit. However, he concluded by saying to the interviewer, "You've tapped into something that chafes at me."
Here is a video showing preparations being made ahead of President Barack Obama's visit to Israel: