Page:The Rambler in Mexico.djvu/25

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19
THE GULF.

With evening it fell dead calm, while the sea continued to roll mountain high, and the goelette for the following twenty-four hours was tossed about like a cork in a boiling pot.

Both bread and water were becoming scarce, and we were put upon an allowance of the latter. After the cessation of the norte the sky became perfectly clear, and the weather warm, with glorious moonlight nights. The lightness and variableness of the wind, however, had allowed us to make but little way; the more so, as we were, during the calms, at the mercy of the powerful currents in these seas.

To cut a long story short, you may imagine us on the afternoon of the fifth day from the date of our mishap, once more within sight of land; and approaching our anchorage with feelings which you can well conceive when you recollect the heartburning we had before experienced, and the hopelessness of a speedy communication with the shore, combined with the present state of the vessel, the nausea which we could not but feel at our prolonged forced contact with the most godless and abandoned set of human beings I ever was in company with; and more than all, the fact that the signs of another norte had been thickening around during the day, and now at the approach of night were becoming too evident to admit of misinterpretation. Upon one subject we were all agreed this time, that if we left the Halcyon without a rag, we would not let another opportunity slip through our fingers. Well, our signal was once more fluttering in the wind, and we came to our old anchoring ground. One or two of our former neighbours were also seen regaining their port—the greater part were yet missing. With what anxiety we directed our eyes to the bar! An hour went by, evening with its menace narrowed the horizon; the wind which had brought us in blew stiffer and stiffer. I had begun to give up my hope, for, without being able to account for it, I had indulged a little—and had as a duty begun to school myself into resignation to the will of God, whatever that might be—when two specks were seen in the breakers, and shortly we saw