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Welcome to Miami

The National Desk's Greg Allen recently pulled up stakes in Kansas City and took over NPR's Miami bureau. "Bureau" in this case refers to a room in Greg's home where he'll have DSL for Internet access, an ISDN line to feed studio quality audio and telephone lines to make the calls a reporter has to make.

Trouble is, the phone company hasn't been able to install the telephone or DSL, and although the ISDN line is working, Greg had to send the piece of equipment you need to use the ISDN line for audio back to NPR headquarters for repairs.

And wouldn't you know, with all his infrastructure in disarray, Fidel Castro enters the hospital, the biggest story of the year in Miami. Greg says he's making do with his cell phone and a laptop. He even expects to have a piece on All Things Considered tonight. But it's not been easy. "It's like working in a hurricane zone," Greg says, "I'm working out of my car."

One major difference. For high-speed Internet access, he heads to Starbucks. It's hard to get a latte in a hurricane.