Mexico Passage

Sarah Grace goes to sea
Chris Yerbury and Sophy White
Fri 23 Mar 2007 20:51
    On Passage to Isla Mujeres, Mexico, N 20' 52' W 86' 21  23rd March 2007
We've all bedded down into being at sea, with Chris and I on watch serially, and the girls and Chris no longer getting sick.  We had a huge load of spaghetti for lunch, with fresh tomatoes and parmesian cheese from Venezuela.
The sea is very bright deep turquoise colour, with little clumps of bright orange beaded seaweed floating along the surface. 
The wind is quite light, and has not been much help against the adverse CURRENT that we have been battling.   We have spent the last two days and nights trying to run up an escalator coming down towards us.   Or to put it another way, we are trying to get through a massive backeddy of easterly flowing water which peels off the northerly Yuccaton channel current.  The Atlantic pours westwards into the basin of the Caribbean sea between all the islands, and the only way out is up through the Yuccatan channel (plughole?!)   So the sea is doing lots of funny stuff with wind against current.   We had to motor SIXTY miles south of Cuba to get to a place where the easterly set was less than two knots.   We haven't succeeded yet in getting out of this backwards flowing mass and it is very frustrating.   Any moment now we hope to break through to the Yuccatan current proper, at which point we will start whizzing north and hopefully get to Isla Mujeres.  It hasn't helped that there has been no-one we could find who had done this before, and who could advise on passage planning,  so we have been out here for three days now trying to get through, which has meant going south, even though we need to go west.
I have many bruises from being rolled into hard sticky out boat things, worst when exactly the same spot gets thumped for second time a few hours later.  There is this little brass hook that sticks out from the side of the chart table.....I think I am going to have to set about it with a mallet if it bruises me for the forty second time.
It's hard to believe that this may be the last passage I make on the Sarah Grace.  I felt sad at dawn today, watching the beautiful sea light up.  Otti, Mimi and I fly home from Cancun in April, so that education education education may continue back in Blighty.  Mimi learnt how to take bearings on ships today to see if they were going to crash into us.  After days of an empty sea, we are now seeing lots of cargo ships.