November 25, 2009
Well, you knew it couldn't last. The wild hilarity of the first part of the tour was too good to be true.
Nikolas had given us about ten minutes for our shopping expedition. We spent awhile fooling around with the Monkey Puzzle tree, then strolled along the street looking in shop windows. I spotted yarn in one, but Dad was getting anxious about catching our bus, so we hurried along to where we'd been dropped off.
Now, each bus had a number on the front door (ours was #25), but other than the front door the buses were all identical. We looked for Nikolas but couldn't see him. We did see a line of numbered buses, but no #25 was visible. One of the buses was just pulling away as we ran up! Aaaaggghh! We were worried it was our bus.
The guide on the next bus (#23) had us board and ride along with them. She found us seats and was very nice, but as we returned to Puerto Chacabuco, my fuming anger gradually changed to dread; I had the sinking feeling maybe we had jumped the gun, and it turned out to be true. We were the ones who'd abandoned our proper bus to wait for us in vain.
Ten or twenty minutes later, our bus arrived with a worried Nikolas on board. Why did you get on the other bus, he asked? We apologized profusely for our error and tipped him heavily, and everything was OK again. We did suggest to the tour company that they put numbers on the backs of the buses too, though!
The rest of the evening was spent in dining at the Four Seasons, attending a reasonably funny comedy/magic show in the Starlight Lounge, and retreating to our cabin to fall unconscious by 10:30. All this fun just tires me out!