Wow.com is reporting tonight that in the beta, the portals in Dalaran and Shattrath have been removed and replaced by class trainers. While it will be nice to have a trainer readily available, this puts the focus back on the old world and may encourage you to actually set your hearthstone somewhere outside of Dalaran. While the portal system is much more convenient, I think I like this change as it will force new players to gain flightpaths instead of get a portal to Dalaran and have the world as their oyster. Plus it makes warlock summoning and mage portals relevant again outside of holidays.
Make no mistake about it, there will be plenty of gnashing of teeth over this change. But it is for the better, if you want the world to feel more like a world and not just a portal jump. I'm not asking for Eve-sized travel here, just more realistic travel. And yes, there will still be some portals to the blasted lands for Outland and to caverns of time from dalaran, which will enable crafty players to learn new portal jumping tricks of the trade.
Ariel has hit 75 this week and continues to grind some battlegrounds and some instances for the xp. It is fun to heal your way through the levels, although it can be a bit repetitive at certain levels. I forgot that Coren is level 78 and up only, which sucks when you are level 75 and have all the other brewfest achievements done! Ahh well.