Just one day after their poignant visit to the infamous Robben Island Jail, where Nelson Mandela spent 18 of his 27 years of incarceration, Barack Obama and his family have said that the experience was 'emotionally difficult and thought provoking', but was 'consideraly more enjoyable' than a dayout at Alton Towers.
The US President arrived with his family in Cape Town ahead of his visit to to the Island, now preserved as a tribute to the anti-apartheid icon, who is still critically ill in hospital. "Just approaching the jail entrance you experience a mixture of anger, sadness and fear as you're transported back to a time of horrific oppression, but I'd be hard-pressed to say that it was less enjoyable than joining the tail-end of a four-hour queue for Nemesis, in the rain", said Obama.
Obama, who visited the Staffordshire theme park with his children in 2009, only managed to get on just three rides after spending an astonishing £90 in entrance fees, and later described it as a "deeply frustrating and painful 8 hours". The president has since frequently called upon his harrowing memories of that day when delivering important speeches on hardships in past and modern day America.
At the time, when asked if he'd used the park's new 'fast-track ticket' service to help reduce the agonisingly long queue times, the president said: 'It did seem like a great idea at the time as we saved 30 minutes of queuing time to get on The Runaway Train, but looking back, we'd spent 30 minutes queuing for the fast-track tickets, which made the whole thing completely pointless".
Sitting in Mandela's cell, Obama noted that his children, although not old enough to fully appreciate the gravity of emotion the cramped room evoked, were far easier to entertain and keep occupied than when queuing for an ungodly length of time, just to be spun around in a man-sized tea-cup for three hours.
Preparing for a speech at Cape Town University tomorrow, Obama has stated that he will draw references from both experiences to convey the message that, even when facing decades in prison under a deeply racist regime, life 'could be worse', at which point he will reference his afternoon on the outskirts of Stoke-on-Trent, wearing an illuminous blue rain poncho, halfway through a three hour queue for Sonic Spinball.