Acapulco to Huatulco Passage…..

Dear F&F,
February 16, 2009

We slipped our lines from the mooring ball pre dawn, enjoying the lights of Acapulco as we motored away from the bay. It was a calm & comfortable ride all morning. No wind, so motoring along. While Scott took the first watch I cut up my 3 colors of peppers that were starting to wrinkle & put them in the fridge. This inspired the idea to make hummus. Unfortunately I was missing a key ingredient: tahini. But I took a can of garbanzos & dug out my food processor to blend them with garlic, lemon juice & zahatar (spice from Israel). It didn\’t have the creamy texture hummus is supposed to have. Probably the tahini helps with that. But we both enjoyed it as a fresh mid morning snack.

Scott heard on the morning net that the Navy at Puerto Angel can be somewhat difficult. They may bring a dog onboard to sniff out drugs. They may insist on taking your documents until you leave the next day, etc. It was one thing to go to Acapulco despite bad rumors & have our own experience. But there is no real appeal to Puerto Angel to warrant taking the risk of a hassle with the Mexican Navy keeping our documents in their office overnight. So this run is all the way to Huatulco about 230 miles.

We saw many turtles bobbing along, their shells shiny in the sunlight. And one spectaular but brief display by a large humpback whale in the distance. I also believe I saw 2 sharks, or perhaps 1 manta ray & 1 shark. You never know what you are going to see out here. I was a bit less excited to see a large tanker on the horizon that did not show up on our ship spotting AIS gizmo. We don\’t know why it isn\’t working. But now that it is dark, I am going outside every 5 minutes to scan the horizon for lights. So far only a few shore lights. We are about 5 miles off the land.

The wind came up enough by 1:30 pm & from a good angle to fly the spinnaker. It is our largest most colorful sail for downwind conditions. Yes, finally the wind & sea are at our back! It was terrific to be sailing again. Give the engines a rest. It is better for me to have more frequent sailing practice. It is not yet ingrained enough that I forget some procedures if it has been a long time. Scott is ever the patient & informative teacher. The wind held for 4 hours. We knew it would lessen with sundown so took it down before it got too dark. Since I am on watch it is more of a no brainer to motor than sail. We have kept the main up because it gives us some push. I just had to jibe it from port to starboard as the day sea breeze is overtaken by the night land breeze.

No moon yet & many many stars. Wonderful. It is still 81 degrees at 8:30 pm. It was almost too hot to nap when I was off watch during the day, 95 in our cabin. But it felt good to stretch out anyway. I am reading Mark Twain\’s \”Following the Equator\”. I don\’t love his style but feel it is a classic that is appropriate to read at this time so am sticking with it. He really rambles telling his tales. I know I read Huckleberry Finn as a kid & enjoyed it. But this is a much bigger book. Fine to pass the time. I switch to a book by Thich Nhat Hanh (Buddhist monk) when I want more substance. Mainly I am just so happy I feel well enough to read at sea!

I got a red bump where my last scopalamine patch was. I had noticed it itching but didn\’t pay much attention to it. I hope I am not developing an allergy to it. I put a fresh one on last night behind the other ear. It works so well for me, I have to find out if you can vary where on your body you stick it.

Scott has kept himself entertained off watch with Stargate Atlantis. Although I enjoyed the SG-1 series with him (all 10 seasons!) I elected not to participate in either the Atlantis or Battlestar Galactica series. I really prefer reading & have a lot of interesting books onboard.

I think at the rate we are going we will easily arrive in Huatulco before dark tomorrow, Tuesday.

Scott & Cindy
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