With bagel shop trips and visits to local restaurants, the president and vice-president have signalled they intend to engage with the city – unlike the previous administration

It was just like any other Sunday, recalls Andrew Dana, owner and founder of the Call Your Mother deli in Washington DC. “I was at the Georgetown store until about noon and then I left because we close at 2pm and I said, how much can happen in the next two hours? By the time I got home, my phone had exploded.

Dana’s staff were eager to tell him about the deli’s newest and most famous customer: the president of the United States. Joe Biden had waved from his extensive motorcade as his son, Hunter, and a member of the Secret Service collected four bagels and left a tip of more than 50%. The publicity boost was instant: sales at Call Your Mother’s locations in Washington are up almost 80% over the past week.

Related: Joe Biden’s inner circle: meet the new president’s close-knit team

That’s the return to normalcy: Biden walking to the ice-cream store or the bagel shop

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