PALM SPRINGS — After seeing out the old year with a traditional dinner-and-dancing bash at the estate of friend Walter H. Annenberg, President Reagan began the new year Wednesday like a lot of other Americans: with a schedule of football games on television.
White House press spokesmen said Wednesday that Reagan conducted "routine paper work" early in the day, then tuned in the televised address to the American people by Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev. But the day's main occupation, the White House indicated in a statement, was watching a round of afternoon bowl games.
For the Reagans and their retinue of Washington press aides and advisers, the four-day stay in this exclusive desert spa has clearly been a time to push politics and world affairs out of mind.
Reagan's own televised message to the Soviets, also broadcast Wednesday, was taped in a Los Angeles hotel room before the Reagans flew to Palm Springs. Even a message of friendship to the Japanese people, officially released on New Year's Day, was handed out to reporters days in advance.