Editor's note: This dispatch describes Thursday at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla.
The last day - and what a day. Remember the small breakfast group? Well we had Condi to ourselves and she couldn't have been better. Did I say smart yesterday? And gracious? What a class act. Then Ari Fleischer. As press secretary he was always one of my favorites but we saw a pretty funny side.
Bob McDonnell completed the morning. Talk about not having a hair out of place. He makes MItt look positively messy!
At my table was the Hungarian Ambassador Gyorgy Szapary. He saw me taking notes and asked if I was a journalist. I told him that was a stretch but that I was writing for our local paper. I'm not totally sure why he was there - he said he wanted to support democracy and asked that I mention his attendance - so I am.
We had some free time before the 5 o'clock bus. The fiasco of the 2 1/2-hour bus ride yesterday was finally explained - our driver got lost. Unbelievable. So the 45-minute ride to the convention center seemed a relief.
When we got there, it was apparent that some sort of demonstration was brewing. Once again, the "rules" issue was front and center. Believe me on this. I have asked at least a dozen people to explain the Maine problem to me and I've received a dozen different explanations. Suffice it to say that it is complicated but I for one would have brought it to a floor vote just to stop the disruption even though I'm not sure that would have been enough.
Thursday provided another day of powerful speakers. I'm still trying to figure out why anyone thought we needed to hear from Callista Gingrich, but we did. And did I say Newt was there also? But I have a question. Do full grown adults really walk around holding hands at public events? Just asking.
Jeb Bush got a huge ovation. He's really loved in Florida and it was obvious. He spoke about education as that was a hallmark of his administration.
And then Clint. What can I say. The buzz all week was that there would be a surprise guest. And he was sensational. But mostly, he was Clint. Why would he be anything else?
To the Republican rock star, Marco Rubio, fell the role of introducing Mitt. This is a guy who is so comfortable in his skin and has such an easy and natural speaking style that listening is easy. By all accounts, he represents the future of the Republican party. Some people are just born with the ability to give a speech, smile while telling their story, interject a joke or two and be all around engaging. Rubio is such a guy. And of course it doesn't hurt that he's also smart, nice looking and quick on is feet. The total package and we're lucky to have him.
But Mitt Romney was the star of the night. His entrance through the crowd caused a stir and created huge energy even before he took the stage. I'm not going to say he has the same natural style as a Rubio for example, but he has a message that we need to hear.
I think he represents the best of America. Like his policies or not, this is a guy who has worked hard and made it big - and hopefully even bigger.
Tomorrow I'll do a recap.
Eagle County Republicans Chairwoman Kaye Ferry, of Vail, was a delegate at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla. She is sending dispatches to the Vail Daily.