Yesterday morning, my friend Patrick left Baños for the town of Tena, which is about 5 hours east. You can imagine my surprise, therefore, when I walked into a bar in Baños this evening, to find him sitting down and waving at me! "Patrick?" I said, puzzled. "What the hell are you doing here? I thought you went to Tena!" Well, he said that he came back: they're only offering easy rafting trips in Tena (due to the weather, same as here in Baños), and the road from Tena to Quito is currently flooded — meaning that there was nowhere else for him to come, except back here to Baños. Anyway, I think that when I saw him, I looked like I'd just seen a ghost. Big shock!
Also had some other unexpected reunions this evening: saw two American guys, that I met a few days ago at the Cloud Forest Hostel in Chugchilán; saw an Israeli guy that I last encountered almost a month ago, in Lima (he's bald and he has a little goatee beard — he says to everyone "just call me Satan"); and saw two American girls, whom I can't remember where I last saw them. Also had a planned reunion, with the two Dutch girls from this morning's rafting trip — although I don't know what happened to Mike, as he didn't show up (we'd all agreed to meet at the Leprechaun this evening).
All up, my final evening in Baños was lots of fun, and full of surprises. Faces old and new, music old and new, and alcoholic beverages old and new. Man, I'm gonna miss this place.