As we lie in bed trying to regain our rest for our next watch, we listen to every creak and sound that the boat makes. I'm still not totally used to these noises. Some of them sound like the boat is going to crack apart. Occasionally a wave comes and hits the inside of the hull and practically knocks me out of bed. Intellectually I know that this vessel can take much more than that, and hopefully much more than what we'll ever experience if we are prudent, but still the sounds are amplified inside the hulls where we lie awake listening. Anything out of the ordinary, and we jump up to question whoever is on watch.
The engine is purring after our 1000 hour service which had brought us to Mazatlan, where the only Yanmar-authorized mechanic in Mexico is located. Many boats have Yanmar motors, so you'd think there'd be more authorized mechanics around, but TIM (This Is Mexico - a phrase that I believe was coined by Toast Conger in her blog Toast Floats - see blogs listed at the right hand side of this posting). And like most things boat-related and/or Mexico-related, it took much longer than expected. I thought we were being conservative when we estimated we'd be in Mazatlan a week, and we left after two. Parts had to be shipped to Guadalajara for repair and service, new parts were ordered from elsewhere, and the engines were literally taken apart and put back together. This in and of itself is a cause for anxiety: The engines were working well before, but now that they've been tinkered with, what if they haven't been put back together properly? There was recently a sailboat that sank in the South Pacific due to a massive leak around the drive shaft after it had just been serviced due to faulty workmanship (google Aquila). Again, we try to be prudent, and the rest is up to the powers that be.
Our delay turned out to be a blessing, as noted in my last blog post. We saw the crew of Gypsy Wind every day, which included helping Kim celebrate her birthday - two years in a row! We could not have planned it better, and our two weeks took on a vacation-like feel to it, with lots of swimming and hot-tubbing, and way more restaurant meals and happy hours than we would have otherwise had. Perhaps it is their Eastern European roots that we share or their strong family values, but I do feel an incredibly strong connection to them. At one point Kim started talking to me in Russian and this couldn't have flattered me more. We watch closely and with admiration as they parent their two teenaged kids (and a third, who is close to Harrison's age - see Harrison's earlier blog about his friend Noah).
Time for me to pop outside to check the darkness, although the sky to our port is brightening up a bit by now and I can start making out the eastern horizon. No sight of land though, as we are more than 30 miles offshore. At least this far off, we hope to avoid fishing lines and running aground...
-Barb, at 21 degrees 08.713 minutes North by 105 degrees 53.244 minutes West
Posted by Single Sideband Radio in the middle of the Pacific Ocean
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