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SOUTH AMERICA 12/09

Buenos Aires | Iguaza |  Mendosa | To Bariloche | Bariloche Day 1 | Bariloche Day 2 | To Ushuaia | Ushuaia
Voyage on the Beagle Day 1 | Voyage on the Beagle Day 2 | Santiago de Chile Day 1 | Santiago de Chile Day 2
Santiago to Quito | Galapagos Day 1 | Galapagos Day 2 | Galapagos Day 3
Return to Quito Day 1 | Return to Quito Day 2
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11 December 2009        Voyage of the Beagle - Day 2

Lot of sailing. No morning activities. Lectures before lunch. Nap after lunch.

In the afternoon Carol went off to see a glacier. In addition to being large, it was actively calving and the cracking was so loud that it caused apprehension among those in the Zodiacs. The ice itself is an eerie blue. Contrasted against the rock, it is a magnificent sight indeed. You might ask, "How does he know all this when he was not one of the people who observed the iceberg firsthand?" The answer is that the Captain, once the Zodiacs were all stowed aboard from the visit to the first glacier, cruised further up the main fjord and treated us to another iceberg so that those of us who didn't see the first one could get to see one firsthand. As a special treat for those who travelled up the fjord in the Zodiacs, there was a colony of cormorants nesting on the cliff face. (CC note: The second glacier was just as beautiful, just as blue, and in many ways more dramatic than the first one.)

That evening was the Captain's dinner. We were seated for the whole cruise at a table with a German couple, who, like ourselves, had travelled widely. They were pleasant and enjoyable. Carol and Susan became NBF's and promised to keep in touch after we both got back from our trips. (The German couple were two months into a five month trip around the world.)

12 December 2009 - The Voyage of the Beagle - the last day

The next day was a trip to Magellan Island to see the penguins. Up to this point I had not taken any Zodiac trips because I was concerned with my ability to get on and off the boats. The Captain and the crew arranged for Carol and me to have a Zodiac all to ourselves and two crew members to help me on and off the vessel.

The trip was great fun and the penguins are funny, weird, and cute all at the same time. There are hundreds and hundreds of them on the Island, all roosting. They talk to each other by braying like a donkey! The sounds are humorous and eerie at the same time. They are comically clumsy on the land, reminiscent of Charlie Chaplin's famous walk, but in the water they are greased lightning. I'm glad that I was able to take the trip and am less anxious about the Zodiac trips in the Galapagos in the days ahead.

The ship landed with a flurry of "hurry up and wait." We said goodbye's to our German friends, went through Chilean customs, and met a new guide for a short tour through Punta Arenas. It started as an early whaling port and is today the largest city in Patagonia. It is painted in a riot of colors that is really fun to look at but the city itself is not a destination place. It is a place where lots of cruise ships come either to get supplies or, like our ship, go back and forth on cruises just between Punta Arenas and Ushuaia.

This report is being done on the plane to Santiago de Chile. We arrived at the hotel at 10 PM, caught up with emails and crashed. We were really exhausted because we had gotten up at 5 a.m. this morning to pack, boarded the Zodiacs at 7 a.m., got off the cruise ship in the late morning, toured Punta Arenas in the afternoon, had a typical long wait at the airport before the flight to Santiago, etc. etc. Tomorrow a tour of the city of Santiago.

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Buenos Aires | Iguaza |  Mendosa | To Bariloche | Bariloche Day 1 | Bariloche Day 2 | To Ushuaia | Ushuaia
Voyage on the Beagle Day 1 | Voyage on the Beagle Day 2 | Santiago de Chile Day 1 | Santiago de Chile Day 2
Santiago to Quito | Galapagos Day 1 | Galapagos Day 2 | Galapagos Day 3
Return to Quito Day 1 | Return to Quito Day 2


HOME  |  AUSTRALIA 2003  |  ACROSS AMERICA  |  IMPRESSIONS OF CHINA  |  VIETNAM  |  AFRICA  |  AROUND THE WORLD 2009  |  SOUTH AMERICA 2009  |  LEGENDARY CULTURES 2011
  |  TURKEY AND GREECE  |  CIRCLE THE ARCTIC