Christine Lagarde can’t move for being mobbed. The moment she rises from her patio table at a Chinese resort hotel, she finds her path blocked by a dozen young men and women dressed in black uniforms. They are the kitchen staff of the resort in Hangzhou where she just has spent the previous few days attending the G20 summit and they want a photo with the managing director of the International Monetary Fund. Lagarde, 60, gathers them around her and obliges.
As she makes her way to the motorcade waiting to whisk her to the airport, she stops to take a photo of a small lake. Mistake. More black-clad staffers come running for more pictures of the woman—a mere public official, mind—who has 5.9 million followers on the Chinese social media site Weibo, slightly more than footballer David Beckham and six times the number who follow Apple Inc. chief executive Tim Cook.
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