A Beautiful Hell

We left Portobello yesterday and had the best sail the past 24 hrs knocking down about 120 miles.  The seas have been following and around 7-8 feet.  Every once in awhile catching a little adrenaline rush as we surf down the faces hitting 8 knots.  The weather was absolute perfection and we even had a pod of 100 dolphin follow us for awhile playing along side and jumping through the bow wake.  

Then we hit “the hell tide” which quickly brought the boat from 6-7 knots down to 2.5-3 knots. We kept on keeping on until we hit the mystery current. A circular current that we sat in for almost a full day making only 13 miles headway and averaging .8 knots mostly in the wrong direction.  Things got better when I finally worked us close enough to shore and we were only 15 miles from the entrance to Bocas.  I fired up the engine just as the sun went down only to find out we weren’t getting any water through the exhaust.  

Into the engine room I went in 7′ rollers taking things apart, checking hoses, thru hulls, strainers, etc.  I came up about 10 minutes later with good news.  I couldn’t find anything broken so we restarted the engine and tried again, still no water.  I finally got a break when I realized we had perfect wind to sail in behind some islands so I could work on the engine.  

We sailed through and around some reef and tucked up behind 2 islands and anchored in about 50′ of water in pitch black with no moon.  At this point in time I was so mentally and physically drained that I dropped everything we had in the anchor locker off the bow and grabbed a beer.  Soon there after it was two, then three, then into the engine room I went fully refreshed.  Everyone was already in bed and sleeping as I sat in a hot nasty engine room anchored in 4′ rollers.  I took the water pump apart and noticed the impeller was missing a blade! I said thanks to the sea Gods and popped in a new impeller, grabbed another beer, and then headed topside to start the engine.  Cranked up and stoked that we can get going at first light, no water.  It was early morning now and I was completely brain dead.  I walked downstairs and fell face first into my bed.


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