Thursday, March 17, 2022

Update Thursday, March 17th

 Happy St. Patrick's Day to all. We now have 3 mechanics names and have contacted them but haven't been able to arrange a visit out to our boat yet. We may have to wait till the weekend as most have full time jobs with either the one boatyard here or one of the charter companies. Meanwhile I wanted to answer an obvious question you might have had: "Why didn't you just sail up to Mexico?"

When this happened we were still inside the barrier reef in Belize. The main Ship Channel was just north of us and goes east/west for a few miles threading through small cayes and reefs. It is lined with lighted buoys and serves as the main entrance into Belize for large ships. In order for us to sail out of this we would need to beat our way up wind. This is a fun exercise for a small or lighter boat designed for racing, but our motor sailor is built for long voyages on one tack. We have a wide tacking angle and the genoa, because of the inner staysail, needs to be furled in every time we would change tacks. Secondarily we had the possibility of sharing the channel with large ships and not much maneuverability. Now we could do this but there are more problems ahead. 

Once out of the channel we could sail slowly north in the light winds until they filled in later in the week and in a few days reach Isla Mujeres or Puerto Morales. Now we would face narrow twisty channels into these tight harbors. We would probably have to reach out and get towed in by someone. Then there would be difficulty getting repairs done there. Belize isn't anywhere as good as Guatemala, but this section of Mexico isn't a cruising area and we believe there isn't a boatyard or marine parts store anywhere around. If our transmission needs to be replaced, we would need a boatyard. 

So that didn't look like a reasonable choice, although we did consider it. We were pretty desperate to reach Mexico and if this had happened after we had made it out to sea, we would probably have continued on. Any way, I just wanted to explain the situation better for you. I'll post an update when we have real news,

Scott and I play Cats Monopoly with Ama at 
Hideaway Caye after we dropped off Connie and
Mark in Placencia. 

Connie enjoys a Belican beer at the Blue Marlin
Resort (photos here dropped from earlier post)

Mark pretends to "heel over" under sail. In reality
we were sailed downwind in a light breeze.

Connie or Mark took this photo of a pelican
checking out Scott Free at anchor at South
Water Caye.

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