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Day 8: Galapagos to Quito

Sunday, May 20, 2001. Sunny 86°

That night we motored until about 5:00 AM. Lana was catching a cold and spent much of the night coughing in the main topside cockpit area because the crew was sleeping on the sofas in the lounge/dinning area. At 5:00 AM we stopped at Kicker Rock. Like Devil's Crown, it is a remnant of a vertical tuff cone formation, raising almost 500 feet from the ocean. Erosion has split the rock and given it its characteristic shape. Some of the smaller boats were able to cruise between the two rocks. As we cruised into San Cristóbal harbor, we saw a huge yacht flying a Grand Cayman flag. It was well over 150 feet long and looked like the most luxurious way to travel. Oh well, next time.

As soon as we dropped anchor, the crew took our bags off first and then returned for us. We stopped briefly at the village to get in some last minute shopping before being bused to the airport. Check in was smooth and we all stopped to have our passports stamped with the Galapagos National Park stamp. Is that legal? The plane was slightly late and everyone dashed for the front and back stairs when boarding was called.

When we arrived in Quito, we were met by Ekaterina and taken back to the Hotel Sierra Madre. In separate groups we decided to visit a public market down by the Hilton Hotel. Like Peru, we were amazed by the vivid colors. Once again, great bargains were found by all. That night we sat around in the bar drinking cervesa (beer) and having a light dinner.

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