07 December 2006

Porto-able blogging

Sorry for the bad pun.

I hope this works; I'm trying to post to my blog from e-mail for the first time ever!

I'm in Porto, and my optimism about having internet at the hotel was dashed to smithereens when we arrived and the rates were 20 euros a day to connect wirelessly. Why, at an otherwise luxurious hotel that offers every amenity, must they charge an arm and a leg for the most important thing? I know, I know. The answer is that precisely *because* it is important, travelers will generally pay an arm and a leg.

But, I'll have you know, I have written at least three full-length entries that are at the moment stored on my computer, and as soon as I have internet again I'll upload them.

At the moment, I'm sitting at a row of computers set up at the congress of the European Socialists, which is taking place at the huge Alfandega building, which used to be the customs house. When I arrived about an hour ago, after an afternoon at the contemporary art museum, I was told that Howard Dean is here! Hopefully I'll get to meet him and bubble incoherently about being a Vermonter, etc. The whole set-up for the congress is immense, and I joined M in watching a series of speeches in the big main hall. Everything is bannered in red, red being the color of the socialists, and there are hundreds of politicians and assistants milling about everywhere you look. Even though M tells me most have left by now.

[Picture added at a later date. Would be too techno-fancy to send photos to my blog.]

In a short while, we're headed to a reception at one of the port wine bodegas, and so we'll get to taste more of the nice port that we've been imbibing over the week. Just now, in the room of booths related to the city, NGOs, and socialism in general, we had a taste of a reserve wine, made here, that gave me that almost meaty warmth in the back of the throat that tells me I have just had a truly good wine.

Well, I'll send this and see if it really appears on my blog. And then, maybe tomorrow if I come back with my computer and we get the password, I can post the other entries that were written on the trip. Sorry that all the chronologies will be messed up. You'll just have to exercise your mental reversal capacity, as if you are watching that movie where everything happens backwards.

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