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And now we’re two in Chile

48 °F

Today was Henry’s final day on our trip to Chile.
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He is using frequent flyer miles to travel Santiago-Houston-NYC, but we needed to purchase a flight from Chile’s southernmost city Punta Arenas to Santiago. Last night Sue had the foresight to check in on Henry’s budget airline hopper flight.
When booked: plenty of time to retrieve luggage in Santiago, walk to international terminal, recheck luggage, and get through security.
Discovered last night: Much later departure time. No way to make the Santiago connection.

Thankfully, there are many daily flights between Punta Arenas and Santiago since Punta Arenas is the closest airport to Torres del Paine National Park. Luckily, there was a flight that left a couple of hours earlier AND still had seats available AND didn’t depart so early that we couldn’t make the 4.5 hour drive from our location way out in the sticks.

Our “quaint” wagon house in Patagonia. Electricity available only ten hours per day. Plumbing sketchy. Wood-burning stove worked too well. Completely fine for two days. Any longer would’ve been a problem, but check out who greeted us each morning—Pretty awesome.
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A final photo of the Towers. (Sue paid dearly for taking the time to stop the car for this photo—Did we mention that Henry was a little anxious about making his flight?)
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Once again: “just a 5-10 minute wait”
Henry nearly had a cow waiting. His inner New Yorker kept reaching over and honking the car horn. We were still fine with time, but there was no way of knowing how many of these obstacles were between us and the airport, still four hours away. Twenty minutes later, we were able to pass.
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Remember that we had exactly the right amount of gas? Riding on “E”, but possibly with twenty kilometers to spare, we limped into the closest gas station. This particular disaster averted.

A Mama duck could’ve ruined our entire trip when she invited her squadron of ducklings to cross directly in front of our car as it screamed down Ruta 9. Thankfully Sue has lightning quick reflexes after an entire week of practice missing potholes and speeding tourist vans. Disaster averted.

From here on out it was smooth pavement to the airport. We even had time for a couple of quick birding stops on this extremely windy, chilly day. (See the devoted birder crouched behind a hillock to get the perfect photo)
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Henry checked in for his flight without a problem, and Sue and Pearl headed off to our hotel in Punta Arenas. While we’ll definitely miss Henry in our family travel unit, the two of us will forge on to the Lake District starting tomorrow. Safe travels Henry!

Posted by skwclar 11:36 Archived in Chile

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