Damn Laptops

Geez. You won’t believe this. Halfway through this blog post, my laptop keyboard stopped working. Dead. And it still won’t work. I’m finishing this post on another laptop that I had luckily borrowed from the office. Unfortunately the loaner goes back in the morning and I must spend the remainder of my stay laptop-free.

Still in Guyana. Due to the searing heat, I’ve spent this weekend mostly holed up in my hotel room. But I did emerge for half an hour for a late afternoon run along the sea wall. The tide was in and the water was splashing against the wall quite violently. (I should explain that the sea wall runs along the entire Atlantic coast of Guyana, protecting the country from flooding. The wall is about 4 feet high and 5 feet wide. Folks run and walk on its top.)

I got sprayed several times, with the brown, brackish water forced into my mouth. Ironically, it’s probably cleaner than the clear water coming out of the taps. (Yes, Andrew, that really is irony.)

The stars above continue to delight. Here in the city their brilliance is not as great as in the rest of the country, but certainly exceeds that which we are used to in North American cities. Back in Rupununi, on the savannah the stars were oppressively bright. One drunken night, as the locals whooped it up inside the ranch bar, Adam and I wandered into the black emptiness from which the horizon could no longer be seen, the land was so wide and flat. We looked up and beheld the spine of the Milky Way and the blinding vertices of Orion, seemingly in defence of the Gemini Twins against Taurus the Bull. Moments like that is why I travel to remote areas, to see sights that are increasingly more rare, yet which are (ironically) more natural and necessary.

Remember that we were not far from the equator, so the starscape had shifted noticeably. I worked hard to find where the North Star should be, somewhere near the horizon.

A new brood of consultants is arriving this week. It’s been an ever shifting cavalcade of pointy heads. Tomorrow I have to make a big presentation I have yet to write… and it’s already past 11pm! Thursday, with luck, I’ll be heading back to the Brazilian border to see Kaieteur Falls and maybe spend the night there. Gotta squeeze all this news in now, ’cause with my laptop on the fritz I may not be able to blog again for a few days!

On an entirely different topic, people have been sending me news reports of Al Gore reiterating that he “has no intention” of running for President in 2008. I direct you to his verbiage. Having “no intention” is not the same as “not running”. I say, watch the Oscars for a clue. When Gore wins for his documentary, the left-leaning part of the country will go wild. If Gore is present to accept his statue on live TV, it means he is not running. If he sends a proxy to accept, then he is running. No serious Presidential candidate wants to be seen in the midst of Hollywood fluffery. And no, I’m not the first to suggest this litmus test.

(Aside: right now I’m watching 60 Minutes, on which Anderson Cooper is profiling Kenny Chesney. Um… one closeted gay icon interviewing an another? Wonder what they’re discussing behind the camera.)