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Sunday, March 19, 2017: It was our last morning on the boat and Daphne Minor greeted us outside our window. We had put out our luggage the night before so it took us no time at all to get our breakfast and get out of the cabin before 8:00 AM.
We met Frank and Other Debbie in the lounge to exchange photos. Technology is a wonderful thing.
Around 9:00, there was an announcement that the incoming flight was seriously delayed, so our departing flight would also be delayed. Not a problem, because we're waiting out our time on a sunny boat in the Galápagos, not in a waiting room in Quito.
We were close enough to Baltra to catch some Internet rays, so we spent some time catching up on work email.
Fortunately, Diet Cokes and cookies were still available ...
... and the view of Baltra Island and Santa Cruz Island was gorgeous.
A fuel boat came alongside to refill our ride.
Once again, we had lunch in the dining room. We felt a little guilty, because we were eating the next group's lunch, but then again, our delayed arrival had meant that we hadn't had lunch when we arrived a week earlier, so it all worked out. We got to have ceviche one more time.
Noon arrived and a fancy boat came by.
At 12:30, we photographed this sailboat ...
... and the National Geographic Endeavour cruise ship.
At 2:00, we finally disembarked.
On shore, we got onto shuttle buses, ...
... and returned to the airport on Baltra Island.
It took less than five minutes to get through security, through the corridor of shops, ...
... and to the VIP departure lounge.
We still had a long time to wait, so it helped that the lounge was very spacious ...
... and there were plenty of snacks, including pastries, fruit, and small sandwiches.
After 45 minutes, a new snack showed up - cellophane packages of hotdogs inside tortillas. Weird but tasty.
We were seated right next to the charging station. After not spending money all week, it was strange to have to use money to buy a bottle of Coke Zero.
At this point, a passing iguana was still mildly amusing so we photographed it.
So what was going on? Tom figured it out. The incoming flight was supposed to arrive at 10:06 AM, but was expected to arrive at 3:22 PM instead (4:22 PM ship's time, since we stuck to Quito time instead of shifting our clocks to the Galápagos time zone).
Since we relied on that airplane, our noon flight (1:00 PM ship's time) would be departing at 4:10 instead (5:10 PM ship's time).
The flight arrived even later than that, pulling up finally at 4:30 PM ship's time.
At 4:45, it was time to board. Leaving the airport is via a separate walkway than arriving passengers. It's the Tunnel of Sadness.
It was hard to believe that we had passed through the Tunnel of Happiness just one week earlier.

Buh-bye, Daphnes Major and Minor!

So, here's the sad truth about Celebrity and the charter flight. Whatever seat you get on the flight over is the seat you get when you return. So we got stuck with middle seats again.

Fortunately, we were able to work out a seat swap with the window-closed people who were sitting next to Tom the week before. Therefore, we were able to actually look out the window at the wonders below. Here is the channel between Baltra Island and Santa Cruz Island.
This is the eastern edge of Santa Cruz Island.
There's Santa Fé Island.
We flew over San Cristóbal Island. There's Kicker Rock on the right.
Here's the eastern end of San Cristóbal ...
... and that's Punta Pitt down there.
We got the whole hot towel treatment, followed by the tablecloths, and a full lunch. We finished watching the last 15 minutes of Arrival, finally.
Here we were over the mainland ...
... then we landed at 7:15 PM.
By 7:45, we were on the bus back to the hotel, passing bottled waters back from one row of passengers to the next.
Less than an hour later, we were back at the JW Marriott, receiving our hot towels, ...
... and our glasses of fruit juice.
Our luggage would be delivered to our rooms, and we were happy to see our luggage on the luggage carts.
The beautiful tree display of roses had changed from light pink to dark pink roses.
So of course we had to photograph them, just as we had a week earlier.
The tour was supposed to finish with dinner at the hotel restaurant, but we had gotten in so late that most of us opted not to eat there.

We had a 4:00 AM shuttle so we were given permission to order room service instead of eating in the restaurant. We shared a tasty cheeseburger and a serving of tres leches cake, and saved the club sandwich to eat for breakfast five hours later.

Day 11 >

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