They met at Rice University in Houston, Texas, immediately after Mr Putin addressed academics and business people of the southern states. As he was greeting the Russian guest, Mr Bush Sr. told him about the audience’s warm response to his speech.
Mr Putin thanked him and said that the university had greatly impressed him.
Mr Bush said that the present US President highly valued Mr Putin’s strategic vision of Russian-US relations.
James Baker, former US Secretary of State, quoted an American saying, “The acorn falls near the oak,” to point out that the Bush father and son both favoured closer ties with Russia.
To that, Mr Putin said that Russians had a similar saying: “The apple falls near the apple-tree,” and that he was sure the helm to which Mr George W. Bush had succeeded remained in worthy hands.