I started this post a few days ago when I was in Mexico City, but I just couldn’t get it finished while I was still away. My itinerary was completely disorganized. I had made no advance plans, read no guide books, and put together no list of must-sees. So I was just winging it, and between all the winging, I found little time for writing.
So rather than doing a chronicle of my 2 1/2 days in La Ciudad de México (or just México, which is how the locals refer to their capital city, or in writing, “CDMX,” which you see all over the city, on taxis and pedicabs, on official buildings, on tourist kiosks, and on the temporary ice rink they erected in the Plaza de la Constitución, as you see in the photo above), I’m just going to share a few experiences and my impressions of what I saw and did. Consider this to be a random wandering around a small part of Mexico City — which is exactly what my trip was. Continue reading “My Mexico Holiday Part 5”→
I arrived at my Airbnb a little before 9:00 last night. It was already dark. After I got settled, I decided to take a walk to the center to see if I could get some food. I hadn’t eaten much all day and I was hungry. Continue reading “My Mexico Holiday Part 2”→
It might be blasphemy to post about my current trip when I haven’t finished all my posts from South America, but here I am in Tepoztlan, Morelos, Mexico, and I want to write about it while it is fresh. Continue reading “My Mexico Holiday Part 1”→
We flew back to Buenos Aires from Calafate on Thursday and returned to the same hotel where we stayed two weeks ago. It’s hard to believe our time in Patagonia is over. But I’m happy to be back in Buenos Aires, a city that I love the more time I spend here. Continue reading “Back to Buenos Aires”→
As Fede said when we departed this morning for the drive to Los Glaciares National Park, this is “the icing on the cake — literally.” I suppose it is literally “ice,” but there’s no literal “cake.” Still, Fede’s first language is Spanish. And lots of native English speakers get “literally” wrong.
Anyway, we were on our way this morning to see the Perito Moreno glacier. This glacier is interesting for a few reasons:
It is easily accessible, just an hour’s drive from Calafate. You can drive right up to it. Many tour companies offer bus trips from Calafate.
In an era when glacial ice is melting worldwide, this glacier is still advancing.
It undergoes a regular rupture cycle every few years.
We didn’t see anything quite so dramatic. And overall, the glacier is impressive because it is so large, but it is not the most beautiful glacier I’ve seen. (That would have been the far smaller Sawyer Glacier, which I saw this past September in Alaska.)
Still, Perito Moreno did not fail to impress, just because it is so massive.
After walking the various paths and snapping innumerable pictures, we took a boat ride on the Brazo Rico side for an up-close view.
When we first arrived in Calafate, Fede told us that there is a bird sanctuary on the shores of Lago Argentino. So when we got back into town after our visit to Los Glaciares, I asked if I could be dropped off there. Surprisingly, no one else in the group wanted to do that. (I don’t know what they all did; some of them I think got dropped off in town; others just went back to the hotel.)
This was actually my favorite part of the visit to Calafate. It’s not that I saw a ton of exotic birds. I didn’t see any flamingos, which I was hoping for. In fact, most of the birds I saw were birds I’d already seen elsewhere during the trip. But watching them in their native habitats was so interesting. I didn’t really mind that it was so windy I couldn’t hold my camera still enough to take good photos most of the time. And I didn’t mind getting caught in a rain squall that felt like needles blowing in the wind. I managed to arrive at a duck blind when I was only mostly wet, not entirely wet. When I opened the door, the space was full of German tourists, who greeted me and told me I couldn’t stay if I didn’t bring coffee. Then they made room for me so I could observe the nearby pond, where I saw some Andean ducks.
After the rain stopped I was able to dry off by the time I completed my walk through the bird sanctuary. Then I headed back to the hotel, too tired to think about food or anything but a relaxing evening. I never made it out to dinner. But I felt fully nourished the the things I saw today!
We drove out of Torres del Paine this morning. We made a stop at the visitors center, where Kris showed us on a model of the park where we’d been and what we’d seen. And we had time for one final stop to admire the scenery of this stunning park. Continue reading “Sheep, Ice, and Money”→
You have been on the go all day. Finally, you have a few hours in the evening to just relax. So you’re sitting in the bar of the lodge, staring at the spectacular view. You have hundreds of pictures yet to download from your camera from the last two days and you can’t wait to see them but you just want to sit here and do nothing. You have seen all kinds of flora and fauna for the first time.
Scenery that knocked your socks off. Weather that included brutal winds, sleet, snow, rain, clouds, and sun. You have hiked to places you never imagined you’d ever go.
We flew SKY from Puerto Montt to Punta Arenas, a flight of a little over two hours. SKY is the budget airline of South America, and it felt like it. So it was good to get off the plane. We met Kris, our local guide, and got on our bus. On the way into the city we made a stop at the Nau Victoria Museum.