Thursday, August 6, 2009

The Empress Family has Grown

The Penhunes' daughter Marcellite Klein with Matthew William Klein. Matthew came about 6 weeks early, so he stayed in the pediatric ICU for about two weeks.

James Klein with Matthew in the ICU. Matthew is at home now and is gaining weight.

Matthew at home in his crib in his parents' bedroom. Matthew already has a sailor suit and tiny boat shoes, so the Empress crew will be expanding soon. We hope that Matthew will be able to join us for some cruising on the Columbia River at Thanksgiving time.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Marina Geese in Action

Here are two short video clips of a pair of geese that live in the marina. They paddle out into the Multnomah channel, apparently to fish, but they also get lots of handouts from boaters. They seldom make a sound, except for a few honks in the early morning.

The male is snow white.

The female is more camouflaged. So far this year we have seen no chicks.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Rainy Season Ends

Warmer, dryer weather finally has come to the Portland, Oregon area after a winter featuring an unusual amount of snow.

Mark's on the Channel, the restaurant in our marina, again is open for lunch and dinner most days of the week. The food is good enough that people drive out from Portland to enjoy a meal in the serene environment of the channel and Sauvie Island across the way.

This pair of geese lives in the marina. They know which boats feed them and they tap their beaks on the hull to let people know when they are hungry.

The stern of Empress from the dock finger behind her. A swim/dive ladder is to port, while the stern anchor is on chocks under the ladder to starboard. The KVH TracVision satellite TV dome is clearly visible. It provides excellent DirecTV reception even in rough conditions at sea.

Empress from the boat in the next slip - a large almost derelict ferrocement yawl that once must have been a high class world cruiser. We are using the gangway that came with Empress for the first time. It is raised off the pier to prevent damage due to rocking of Empress by wakes from passing boats. The new tender cover, bimini, and flybridge console canvas are welcome additions.

Empress from the stern of a paddlewheeler that formerly took tourists up the Columbia river.

A new reproduction of a painting of young Queen Victoria now graces the salon of Empress. Victoria also was Empress of India. A similar painting hangs in the Empress Hotel in Victoria on Vancouver Island in Canada. The Penhunes like to tie up in front of the Empress Hotel to enjoy the ambiance of Victoria including high-tea at the Empress Hotel and the excellent museum that has a marvelous collection of giant totem poles. The yacht Empress got her name from Victoria Empress of India.

A tug pushes a barge full of gravel up the Multnomah Channel past Empress. There is little commercial traffic on the Multnomah Channel, but the tugs and barges probably serve the useful function of keeping the shallower parts of the channel clear.

Floating homes are popular on the rivers and channels in the Portland area. Our marina is building more of them with adjacent boat slips.