WASHINGTON -- The friendship former first ladies offered Michelle Obama is "very cool." President Obama walks Bo at night while Mrs. Obama takes the early shift. And you can find Mrs. Obama every Saturday watching kids play soccer with other parents.
These details are from an interview Mrs. Obama gave Time magazine for its latest edition, with a photo of her on the cover. While relishing her new role, she told Time, "It's a lot easier to live your life when everything you do doesn't have a consequence."
Other highlights from the interview:
• • Mrs. Obama retold how alienated she was from the University of Chicago while growing up a few miles from campus. We learn a few more details: that her mother, Marian Robinson, was a secretary to the "legal office" at the school for four years.
"But I never set foot on campus. We came through, we picked her up, we left. It was sort of like another world that didn't belong to me," Mrs. Obama said.
• • Mrs. Obama talks about her modest upbringing on Chicago's South Side, surrounded by a close-knit extended family.
Her grandparents, she said, "lived in this housing development called Parkway Gardens. I was actually born there. But I saw it as a wonderful, small apartment building. That's how I remember it. But now when I pass it, it's -- I was like, God, I never saw that apartment in the way that I'm seeing it now."
• • Mrs. Obama does not think she has changed much.
"I'm pretty much who I've been for a long time. So that ... I just think that people have the opportunity to see all of who Michelle Obama is over a longer period of time. And hopefully, they like what they see. And I think they actually ... liked what they saw then. It's just that ... because if that weren't the case, I don't think Barack would be president, you know?"
• • Mrs. Obama reports "there's a real camaraderie" among former first ladies.
"And I've gotten wonderful letters and phone calls and invitations to lunch, and it's just from every single former first lady who is alive ... they've reached out.
"And my sense is that it's not just me; I think they do this because they know, experience when you've got children, that you need support. And that's very cool, I'd say."