- 30 Oct 08, 06:42 PM GMT
Sandusky, Ohio: A quick dash through the north of Ohio, the sun now warming the ground. It's such a beautiful day. We stopped at another charming little town, Sandusky, its roads lined with McCain supporters. A small but vocal group of Obama voters stood among them, shouting for their candidate.
Then the McCain campaign deployed its secret weapon.
Yes, it was John McCain, but it was a different kind of John McCain - one we have not seen for a while. He delivered a rousing, articulate, and intimate speech on a gazebo in the middle of the town.
He loved it, the crowd loved it. He was able to speak directly to people, rather than from a perch on some anonymous stage where he often seems less than comfortable. He is certainly a lot better at speaking off the cuff than he is at reading an autocue.
Why has the campaign not deployed "John the straight-talker" for what seems like an eternity? His rallies look good on TV, but today was the best performance I have seen him give. He was up close and personal with the crowd - and speaking in his own words. In an election that is so much about image, surely a relaxed, happy John McCain would have played better than the slightly awkward, slightly removed politician standing above a crowd that we have grown more used to seeing?
Is he finding his voice, and himself in the last few days?
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites