Southern Patagonia 2005

Or put another way - we were the fun story. But we'll get there.


The island is a couple hour boat ride up the strait. It's actually the ferry coming across from Porvenir that does double duty and carries people to the island when it's day job is complete. Needless to say, it wasn't a luxury cruise.


But that's not the point. The ferry drops us off at a ~7acre island with nothing but a lighthouse and thousands of penguins.  They're everywhere. Cute ones, furry ones, ugly ones. But they're absolutely everywhere. There's ropes setup to guide you along a path that doesn't directly interfere with their habitat, but you can get really close. And they have to cross the proverbial road to get home from playing in the water.


(windows .wmv movie)



So we're having a good time with the penguins. They teach Mary a little game:

(windows .wmv movie)



A little while after the video clip, Mary is playing with the penguin in the picture above. She came dangerously losing her finger to this feisty one.  A bit after I took that picture, some guy walks over and starts talking at me. He's very abrupt and a bit rude ... and speaking Spanish very quickly. He wants to know Mary's name and if she's Korean. I'm a bit standoffish given his poor manners and lack of explanation but finally give up her name and ethnicity. Whatever, it'll get him to go away.


The next day at the hotel shed some light on the encounter. We're walking past the front desk and the girl stops us and begins shuffling papers. After a momentary search, she tosses the back page of the local newspaper at us:



Not only do I look goofy with two cameras, but my name didn't even make it in print!


Now being perhaps the only Chinese girls in Patagonia already made Mary stand out a bit. But now she's got press. This actually came in handy later in the trip.