Original time of departure: 7:35pm. Delayed. New time of departure: 8:30pm. Then 9pm. Board. Taxi. Stop for half an hour. Problem with the engine. Try to resolve THAT for a half hour. Go back to the gate to get mechanic……another hour…it’s now past 11pm. They can’t figure out the problem. Flight rescheduled for the next morning at 11am…. Same flight number..same seats. Baggage stays with the plane. Flight rescheduled to 12pm, then 4pm, then 6pm, then 7:30pm, 8:30pm, and finally 8:50pm.

Despite not being showered or having clean clothes, Kevin’s sister and her family and I made the best of the situation and spent the day exploring the Miami waterfront and going on a “we promise you won’t get wet” speedboat ride that we came back from soaked. I was proud of the fact that after the initial shock of getting drenched, we were all able to see the utter ridiculousness of our situation…Stranded in Miami, no luggage, covered in salt water, about to get on a flight. We giggled and took selfies.

We finally arrived in Quito, Ecuador at 1:15am Monday nearly two days after leaving SFO early Saturday morning. We are exhausted but thrilled to finally be here. Our plan? Travel the countryside for 5 days before heading to the Galapagos for a week with Kevin’s family.

You might be asking “Weren’t you JUST in the Galapagos????” The answer is yes. Kevin and I came here a year and a half ago, but this trip is about being with family and fulfilling my father-in-law’s dream to take his family here. We also will be snorkeling, not diving so it’s a totally different kind of trip. The current wrinkle in that plan? He is recovering from Covid. Hopefully, he’ll be well enough to travel this Thursday when the rest of the family is flying out to meet us.

What does one do with only a few hours in Quito? Visit the equator of course! We spent this morn at Mitad Del Mundo where we could stand with one foot in each hemisphere at the same time and do all kinds of experiments. For example, did you know that water in our hemisphere spins counterclockwise while in the Southern Hemisphere, it’s clockwise and that we were able to see this happen firsthand simply by stepping a few feet off the equator line? Or that you can balance a raw egg on the head of a small nail (Syd accomplished this feat) because there are fewer forces acting on the egg?

This afternoon, we flew to Cuenca where we will start our journey over land across central Ecuador back to Quito. Tyler and Josh aren’t out until Thursday, so they are flying out that night with Kevin, his dad, and some cousins and meeting us Friday. We board the boat on Saturday.