Adonai Arrives the River
13 October 2016 | 15.39' N : 88.59' W
Saturday : Oct 8th 2016
Adonai departs Captain Denis’s Redneck Yacht Club at 2 pm with 8 souls aboard our destination is Ensenda Guatemala. Weather is 30 degrees starboard bow,15 due west apparent wind. We estimated a 5 day sail with the forecast turning in our favor tonight. We will be headed west off of Key West, Florida.The sun is shining the seas are calm hurricane Matthew is long gone.
Adonai has a well qualified crew ! Onboard are 3 Maine Maritime alumni our son, 3rd officer unlimited Trevor Gordon and his friends Engineer Jared Woods and Engineer Geoffrey Gezic. My husband our captain is Ted Gordon who is a well seasoned sailor with over 35,000 miles of sea and wind in his sails. Our long time friend and Blue Water Surrender board member is Captain Bert Jimenez. He says have tongue will travel “translator” bonus score here! This is his third sail with us to the Rio Dulce Region of Guatemala and it is a pleasure to have him on board again! Our praise team is the beautiful April Grace Henry who sings like an angel from the Fl Keys Prayer House and amazing Josh Stoneman from Key Lime Sailing Club both who have recently joined our team . I ,Gail Gordon am sincerely grateful to have all theses talented people on board. The nautical experience on board is over 500,000 sea miles. What is even greater than this is we are protected by the one and only , the greatest Master who has the authority to clam the waves and the seas.
Currently Josh is on the helm. This is his first crossing with 700 hundred sea miles ahead and 20 miles behind!
7:30 p.m. traveling at 8.5 now off shore to avoid the checker board of lobster traps. Planet Venus is directly ahead resting in the dark grey cumulus clouds hanging above a vibrant pink ,and orange stripped sky. The half moon is tilted above Adonai as she heads into the night sky with one dolphin barely visible taking a pass starboard bow!
Sunday morning heading south west on Oct 9, 2016 we are rolling into the morning as the stars fade away and the sun heats up the land. We are holding a steady 8.3, Key West is 70 miles behind and we have following seas. The wind continues as a gentle breeze touching your skin with a gentle whisper. The good news is only 600 miles to go!
Its been a quiet day flying fish surfacing but non on the line. A bird formation and one tiny stowaway along with a butterfly which is unusual for out here. The distant faint grey on the horizon is Cuba at 4:30 p.m . The day has been heated by the tropical sun making the deep blue very inviting. It becomes even more mysterious, exhilarating and refreshing as we slip into the 1000 plus feet of clear deep blue! The sun itself is slipping also, but behinds the horizon clouds. Adonai is cruising through the water at 10 knots with a delightful surprise of a migrating hawk circling above our mast. Soon we will be sailing into the dark of night lit by the glorious stars, you might say heaven is here.
Monday morning wind and seas have picked up we are down to one engine and one sail but sausage and eggs or still on the grill ! The pressure from the wind took out the block on the sail, we just replaced it on Sunday. The port engine is overheating due to impeller burn out. We are waiting for the seas to calm .They are up to 5 feet so Its a bit of rolling and being tossed around to send Ted down into the bilge to repair the engine or hoist Jared up the mast which is 80 feet off the water.
Tiny finches are coming aboard exploring and resting from being out at sea. A flock of yellow beak gulls heading west in formation add color to the cloud filled blue sky. One strike on the fish lines, surprisingly a barracuda.
Despite the seas building Ted assisted by Geo and Jared climb down into the deep dark of the engine room to replace the impeller which is necessary to cool the engine. Afterwards Jared volunteers to go up the mast to replace the block gripping like a monkey as Josh, Ted, Trevor, Bert and Geo hoist him up the towering mast.This is a matter of trust. Success is claimed when Jared is safely back on the deck. April and I stand by the helm keeping Adonai downwind reducing the rocking from crashing waves. Now with the main sail raised we are underway traveling off shore of Mexico. The sky darkens, the wind becomes cool, the water turns clear slate grey an icy blue color shimmering as far as you can see.The rain falls making God’s shower for the men out on the deck, who are enjoying this gift from heaven.
Tuesday morning is sunny and warm, peace surrounds us as the seas have mellowed out. The boom is squeaking a whistle with the rolling of the sea and an occasionally boom from below from the breaking of waves. Adonai is rocking in a rhythmic roll across the sea. Our little bird stow away “FInchie” is fluttering about the cabin until he sees Trevor and decides to rest in his hair!
What an exciting day sailing it is from one extreme to the other. Peaceful Adonai takes a turn to port giving favor to the fisherman with the catch of the day on line. Much to our surprise a waves crashes over the deck into the main salon via the open ports. I run to rescue the navigation table as Jared does a dive down below as the gallons of sea water flood Berts bunk. The second wave is coming and dread one second too late on the hatches. Water is every where as we retrieve items in efforts to save our electronics first then all else. The good news is we caught the tuna! The rain is coming down leading into a soggy afternoon. Today continues as a day of surprises. The freezer is struggling causing the food stores to unthaw before their time. Sailing is always unseen adventure! The rods start screaming and two dolphin hit the lines unfortunately tangling on each other. Hand winding over a towel reels in the catch! Our guys will go to any length to bring the catch on board! More fish on as daylight fades into the grey horizon. The grill is filled with tuna. The night sky is upon again and Belize is to our starboard while tomorrow will be another day.
Oct. 12, 2016
The night was calm despite the cloud cover and threat of rain. The seas have flattened out and we are expecting to be in Livingston, Guatemala this afternoon . We are 60 miles from the mouth of the Rio Dulce. This morning a double beautiful bright rainbow is piercing through the clouds exuding a river of light manifesting a trail of beauty.
Gods amazing blessings of his creation captures our hearts as the beautiful dolphin come and play on Adonai’s bow wake. Some larger than others, one with a white ring around it’s nose another speckled like an appaloosa horse, all just a treasure to watch.
The sun is blazing today making for a great swim in the clear Belize waters, a giant fan bed below! The current is swift and the water so refreshing! Tiny islands are scattered about and the mountains are appearing on the horizon. Next stop Livingston Guatemala for check in . Breathing in deeply you can smell the rich soil of the river as we motor over the sand bar to exist the ocean and to enter the mouth of the river. Our arrival is 5 p.m. with numerous shrimp boats going out for the evening catch. Adonai drops anchor and awaits the Harbor Master. The yellow quarantine flag is flying through the night with the lights of town reflecting across the water.
Oct. 13, 2016 With a two hour time change the entire crew is up early awaiting to clear customs. Success by 11:30 a.m. we are legal in the country.The journey up the river is filled with beauty as far as the eye can see. Sheer jungle cliffs are towering above in lush rich green vegetation. Children are playing under the trees on the waters edge as we pass villages which are unseen hidden in the dense jungle forest. Fishermen are scattered across the waters in their wood cayucos. Their nets held up by small plastic bottles are hard to see. Going up the river becomes a dodge ball game. The sun is hot the mountains shout out in the distant as the clouds hang loose beckoning your heart to sing a new song.
A great journey with great people, Adonai now safely docked at Nana Juana!