As a hindsight, I had the same problem in both areas the original poster had. Rather than getting a save that was from after the point, I had heard that by deleting (or at least removing) a file fixed them. They were .dlg files that were related to the area that I had gotten stuck in. Perhaps the reason why it hadn't worked for you was that the game got saved after you had gotten to the stuck point.
It would be nice if you could do manual saves at different points of the game so that this doesn't happen. Anyways, if you happen to get stuck again without hotspots to interact with, instead of exiting, try alt-tabbing and closing the game. That'll keep the game from saving you in a stuck state.