Finally, We Are on the Boat!

(Day 1, Baltra Island, Galapagos! ) Finally, we are here! ! ! I am about to split in two with the excitement and anticipation of being “on the boat” at last.

By no means do I have complaints: the travel has been so smooth, the length and legs are simply part of any +5,000 mile journey.

Yet again, the Lindblad folks were precise and clear. Leave check-in luggage outside the hotel door by 6:15 am. Breakfast at 6:45. Buses leave at 7:45. Boarding passes handed out at the airport. Then, relax on the 700 mile Avianca flight to Baltra Island, with a piping hot ham and cheese sandwich that puts American’s 4 hour flight to shame (are you surprised?).

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Early Morning Start, to the Airport
Abraham Pachikara, Copyright 2018 (Click for larger image)

Once landed on Baltra Island, it’s Island Control (like a local customs & immigration) to a bus to a Zodiac (small boat) to the Endeavor Cruise ship.

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On the Ground, in the Galapagos
Abraham Pachikara, Copyright 2018 (Click for larger image)

With each step, the smiles on our faces get larger.

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Closer… Closer… Welcomed by Christian… We can see the ship!
Abraham Pachikara, Copyright 2018 (Click for larger image)

We could tell we were so very close… Not just because the ship was off in the distance, but also the balmy temperatures, easy breezes, & big equatorial sun.

While waiting for an empty Zodiac to pull up, we saw our first animals. The reaction is simple: perhaps 500 photos are taken of these sea lions and iguanas.

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Boarding the Zodiac, then the Endeavor… Finally our room!
Abraham Pachikara, Copyright 2018 (Click for larger image)

If I do have a worry, it is that my own expectations are unrealistic. Could that be? Gosh I hope not but I really am looking forward to this trip.

Why did I choose the Galapagos, invest the money and precious time in a trip such as this? A quote by Seneca perhaps sums it up best:

It is not that we have a short time to live, but that we waste a lot of it. Life is long enough, and a sufficiently generous amount has been given to us for the highest achievements if it were all well invested. But when it is wasted in heedless luxury and spent on no good activity, we are forced at last by death’s final constraint to realize that it has passed away before we knew it was passing. So it is: we are not given a short life, but we make it short, and we are not ill-supplied but wasteful of it… Life is long if you know how to use it.

Gosh, I should have been traveling like this for decades but perhaps fell into some manner of cozy rut. Many ruts actually. My hope is this trip will burn into my memory as THE benchmark against which I measure my activity, and endlessly course correct to the larger, better place on many important fronts.

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