'What are they doing in our town?' Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner struggle to get along with Florida neighbors

'What are they doing in our town?' Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner struggle to get along with Florida neighbors
Advisor to the President Ivanka Trump and Senior Advisor Jared Kushner leave a conference following her address Saturday, June 29 2019 at the G20 Women’s Empowerment Event in Osaka, Japan (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

Some of Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner's new neighbors aren't exactly pleased to have them in the town of Surfside, Florida.

"All but banished from Washington after January 6, Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner have been hiding out in a little no-frills town in South Florida," the Washingtonian reported this week. "Its Trumpy mayor couldn’t be more thrilled, but the former First Kids have had a frostier welcome from another set of locals."

One Surfside resident, who asked to remain anonymous because she continues to live near the couple, told the magazine she first encountered Ivanka Trump last June. The former White House adviser was walking her little white dog Winter (believed to be a Pomeranian mix) near the couple's seaside condo building. The resident said she watched as Trump "led the dog off the pathway toward the beach, right past a sign that clearly said dogs weren’t allowed."

"The resident, a beach activist who finds high purpose in protecting Surfside’s loggerhead sea turtles during nesting season, mobilized," the Washingtonian reported, adding that Ivanka Trump must have walked past the large beach rules notice saying "no dogs allowed" scores of times before then.

“I was speed-walking at her and yelling at her,” the resident recalled. “I just opened my mouth and said, ‘You can’t go out there with the dog!’”

“Oh-uh, I didn’t realize,” Trump responded.

“You’re standing right next to the sign,” the neighbor told Ivanka. “Look, it says ‘No dogs.’”

The resident encountered Ivanka and Jared again a few months later, on the beach with their five-year-old son, Theodore. "The neighbor reminded Jared, in swim trunks, and Ivanka, in a 'cute ruffled outfit,' to watch out for jellyfish," according to the Washingtonian. After Theodore hurried into the ocean, the neighbor immediately became concerned.

“I’m thinking, Why is this boy in the water alone on a boogie board with this moderate rip current? I’m a mother, and I would never let my child alone in the water like that," the resident said.

Moments later, Kushner had to run into the water after Theodore, who had started drifting away from the shore. According to the Washingtonian, the neighbor's encounters with Ivanka only reinforced a long-held impression.

“She seems to be about — ‘I live in this little cocoon where the rules don’t apply to me’ — in her own little world," the resident said.

The resident referred to Kushner as "slenderman" and took this dig at Ivanka's appearance: "She’s well put together. She’s had a lot of work done, and it’s good plastic. It’s Miami, and there’s a lot of bad plastic here. She has good plastic.”

Surfside, a town of only 6,000, has largely managed to stay off people's radar, which is fine with many residents, the Washingtonian reported.

"Eliana Salzhauer, a town commissioner, likens her reaction upon hearing Javanka was arriving to a scene in 1980s The Jerk in which Steve Martin’s absurdist character is ecstatic to find his name listed in the phone book while an unhinged killer picks Martin’s name randomly from the same directory," the magazine reported.

“It was, ‘Oh, good, the town is getting recognition,’" said Salzhauer, a Democrat. “Then it was, ‘Oh, no, the psychos are coming.’"

According to the Washingtonian, "the last thing Salzhauer wants is to become an enabler of the couple’s reinvention act in South Florida, which makes the whole situation rather frustrating."

“What are they doing in our town?” the commissioner said.

The Washingtonian concluded its deep dive into Kushner and Trump's new life with an anecdote from Surfside's Halloween Spooktacular event, where even Salzhauer was impressed with how well the family managed to blend in.

"As the Kushners were leaving the event, Ivanka bent down to pick a large pumpkin off the ground and started to walk off with it. Families were allowed to take one gourd home with them. Ivanka handed hers to Jared, who carried it the rest of the way. Their bodyguard, who followed Ivanka, also walked out with one," the Washingtonian reported. "The double-pumpkin takeaway may not have fallen strictly within the rules, but what’s a pumpkin or two in the scheme of things? This was Ivanka and Jared attending not some White House event or private-school recital or exclusive soiree in the Hamptons. It was just small-town life in South Florida, where they could easily slip out with their pumpkins and disappear into the night."

Read the full story.

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