Sarah Palin, John McCain's running mate, has been getting a crash course in diplomacy and international affairs this week, meeting her first foreign heads of state courtesy of the U.N. General Assembly's annual gathering of international bigwigs.
Most of the meetings have gone off without a hitch, a lightning round of sessions in which curious world leaders finally get a gander at a potential vice president who has rarely traveled abroad and who has claimed that her foreign policy credentials include living in a state that is close to Russia.
On Wednesday, however, officials traveling with Pakistan's new president, Asif Ali Zardari, got up close and personal.
Shortly before Palin met the Pakistani leader at the InterContinental Hotel, aides for the two squabbled about whether they should sit behind a low coffee table. Zardari's aides wanted a table, Palin's staff did not. Ultimately the table was taken away. Score one for the Americans.
Entering the room, Palin was introduced not only to Zardari but to Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Quershi, Pakistan's foreign minister, and Sherry Rehman, the information minister.