February 17-22: Back to South America

Steven Dutch, Professor Emeritus, Natural and Applied Sciences, University of Wisconsin - Green Bay

February 17

Passengers walking through the Penguin Room signaled the end of sleep. I went down to the dining room and, since the rolling wasn't that bad, plus I could see the horizon through the big windows, decided to have a nice breakfast. After a couple of minutes, I decided that maybe had not been the best idea. I told the waiter to cancel my order, got up on deck, and flopped onto a chaise lounge. While I was settling down, a lady passenger came out, one of the paying ones in her official Lindblad Explorer red windbreaker, poised, neatly coiffed. She looked about for a few moments, then turned the loveliest shade of green and lunged for the side. Even though I'd been seasick on the way down, I still thought "turning green" was only an expression.

Meanwhile, I wasn't about to lay outside in 30-degree weather for two days, and I hadn't been fortunate enough to be able to double up with a crew member. I finally found a cranny off the medical room where I could flop down. I spent most of the time there; it was warm and empty. I was even able to read; the only thing around was James Herriot's All Creatures Great and Small, which I hadn't read.

February 18: Cape Horn

By late afternoon on the 18th things had quieted down and I went to the forward lounge. The weather was crummy as usual, but good enough to give us a view of Cape Horn.

February 19-21: Usuiaia Again

Ushuaia is exciting when you're about to jump off for the Antarctic, dull when you're there waiting to get back to the rest of the world.

I heard from one of the local contacts that there was an archeological dig down the coast: "you can't really miss it." So I walked about five miles or so down the coast to take a look (nothing else to do). It was supposed to be right about where the coast road turned inland. Nothing obvious. I continued on down the coast a short way, found some big shell heaps (probably human in origin) but no dig. Well, it was a nice hike.

February 22: Flight to Buenos Aires

Left: looking east down the Beagle Channel
Left and below: rare glimpses of the southern Andes from the air.
Coming in to Buenos Aires. The Rio de la Plata is the water in the background. Much to our disappointment, we landed not at the main airport but a small domestic airport instead. That meant we couldn't get our tickets changed to go to Santiago. The result was an extremely frustrating next day.

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Created 15 February 2000, Last Update