Greetings from northern climes! I have been on the ship for about five days, and I believe we're traversing the St. Lawrence River at the moment on our way to Quebec City. This being my first cruise experience, I have enjoyed the intelligent conversations with our WEEKLY STANDARD cruisers, the delightfully unstifling temperatures, and the alacrity with which my bed is made for me every day. In fact, now that I think of it, I'd welcome all three back at home.
As it is, I have only two more days to enjoy them. But I've used my time wisely, having dined with two generals, one Fox-News-loving Canadian waiter, and at least one Maine lobster who met his demise upon the tines of my fork (I think they're calling that the Obama diet these days).
I see that McCormack's dedicated and mysterious stringer has brought you all the news value about the straw poll. But in other news, I hiked Cadillac Mountain and barely avoided having to hitch-hike back to the boat to make it in time for departure. A WEEKLY STANDARD staffer tried lobster ice cream in one of the idyllic Bar Harbor, Maine sweet shops and reported the taste was something less than ideal.
I hiked up the streets of Halifax, Nova Scotia, whose downtown is at about the same incline as Cadillac Mountain, visited an old British fort, walked through the city's beautiful public gardens, and hiked back down the hill for a pint or two on the waterfront at Alexander Keith's brewery. It's an old Haligonian brew created by a prominent local businessman and three-time mayor of the city, which has what struck me as a particularly unassuming, Canadian-style slogan—"Those who like it, like it a lot!" I liked it a lot. In Prince Edward Island, I or another WEEKLY STANDARD staffer may or may not have purchased the entire 9-hour, three-part CBC "Anne of Green Gables" miniseries, thereby fulfilling the dream of my 13-year-old self to see it in its entirety. John McCormack may or may not be required to attend said viewing party. I'm off to the next panels, which are pretty much wide open for questions and conversations with cruisers, and then a formal dinner tonight. I must also refute the mysterious stringer's report about certain young people not holding their own at cognac & cigar night. Continetti and I have been burning the midnight oil. It's a rough job, but someone's gotta do it.