Dennis has a good friend (and former associate machinist) who lives a block away. Pat said he could drill and tap a couple of additional screw holes in our windvane trimtab. He did this with precision while his wife, Rose (who'd driven me to the store the day before) made us all coffee. Clark discovered that our spare prop was sized for a shaft of 1-1/8" diameter (it was an eBay purchase, one of only a very few that turned out to be not exactly as claimed). Our shaft is 1-1/4"– West Coast Prop rebored and rekeyed it to fit at a reasonable cost.
Meanwhile, some folks who'd spotted us in Ilwaco as they sailed their Hans Christian Mk II there for the weekend heard we were in Hammond. They came by one evening as we were preparing dinner. Phil knew immediately that Rikki-tikki-tavi was a John Marples Constant Camber design, so Clark dropped what he was doing and invited Phil, Sandra, and son Danny aboard. Next morning they drove in with two cars, handed us the key to hers saying, "Keep it all long as you like." The kindness of the people we've met is overwhelming.
I used the car for laundry and grocery shopping, then we took a quick drive to the famous Astoria Column, high on a hill above the town. It affords a panoramic view of the river and mountains beyond Astoria. We were told that we could not visit Astoria and not visit the column! Well, we didn't climb up it but we have photos to prove we were there. We also stopped at a local bike shop and bought some decent seats for our new bikes (helmets too).
One of the biking couples who came upon Rikki-tikki offered us tickets to the Maritime Museum. Barry and Sally picked us up on Sunday afternoon, dropped us off at the museum, later picked up us and took us home with them for martinis and homemade pizza. They are wonderful, interesting folks who have involved themselves in their adopted community with concerned activism. They also included us in their Tuesday go-to-town foray and we found some provisions at "steal-me" prices at a store recommended by Sally. We wish we had more time to spend here but the summer is waning.
The day Rick welded the strut, I noticed a young woman arriving at the launch ramp in a red kayak. She climbed out and began attaching wheels to her kayak and what looked like a tow-hitch to the bow. What was this all about, I wondered. So I walked down and said, "It looks like you're going someplace serious!" She responded, "Yes, I'm going to San Diego." Well, what an understatement! Renata Chlumska is going all the way around America in her kayak, and she's just begun. This Swedish adventurer left Seattle, paddled around Cape Flattery, then headed south along the coast. Knowing the Columbia River entrance to be treacherous, she decided to go across The Peninsula to Ilwaco, then across the river to Hammond, where she would strap on her inline skates and tow her kayak overland back to the coast at Seaside. (editor's note: you can see Nina and Clark's entry into Renata's guestbook at http://www.renatachlumska.com/ on July 23, also, the 'perfect welcome' in Oregon that Renata mentions in her journal must have been Nina because she says she was the only one at the docks to meet her!)
She was wearing a red Helly Hansen ballcap. Clark was wearing a tan Helly Hansen ballcap. Her major sponsor is Helly Hansen– perfect. I invited her to meet Clark and see Rikki-tikki-tavi. She toured, signed our guestbook, posed with me and promised to contact us when she returned to Seattle in sixteen months upon the completion of her singular circumnavigation of the US perimeter. We promised to take her sailing. She has set out on a tremendous endeavor and we wish her good will and safe travels. It was inspiring and wonderful to meet you, Renata.
We enjoyed a sumptuous barbequed salmon dinner with Karen and her parents, Gerty and Roy, longtime Astoria residents. Karen is connected to us by family ties, somewhat distant and unknown to us until we came to stop here, but we are so glad we came to know all three! We thank them for their hospitality and Roy's famous salmon!
I invited two of the Rogers daughters aboard Rikki-tikki-tavi for a tea party because they kept wanting to climb up into the boat while we were busy assessing the situation, just having made it to dry land safely. They were hovering like bumblebees, buzzing and chattering with questions. I scheduled it for 11 a.m. the next morning, baked cookies and rang our brass bell when it was time. Clark made a formal invite to make sure it was okay with mom and invited her too. Here is a photo of Holly (the youngest is only 18 months and didn't attend) showing her arm where she'd written the time in ink. Actually, she and Ashley, the eldest, were up before 7 a.m., so excited, both peering into Rikki-tikki from the highest vantage point they could climb to, which was the gunwales of a little boat on a trailer next to the shop. Heavens! They did have fun jumping back and forth over the aft bunk to the fore bunk! They begged to have a sleepover. I gave them a copy of Kipling's Rikki-tikki-tavi story in booklet form that we have printed up. Very cute girls, curious and full of fun– wish we could have a parcel of their energy!
By Wednesday evening we'll be floating again...
Best wishes to everyone,
Clark & Nina s/v Rikki-tikki-tavi