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A long-standing genre, so to speak, within ship modeling is ships in bottles. Friends in Massachusetts sell their bottle craft for over $1000 each. Since I was a child, I wondered how they got the ship inside the bottle. Was the bottle cut open and then invisibly reglued after the ship was inside? This was a version–at a certain age–of my wondering how babies got in “there,” a puzzle solved long before the ship-in-bottle one. Finally, in my 30’s I grew aware, fondly listening to these modelers’ descriptions of the meticulous technique involved in inserting the vessel inside the vessel, stepping the sail rig with thread then cut.

awls.jpg

Lacking the patience for this fine craft, I hereby launch a sub-genre of blogging ship fotos: ships on walls. If you’re wondering . . . No, I was not driving while fotografing, DWF.

Wall vessel exhibit A might be Al-Hofuf, named for the Saudi oasis town home to star-crossed lovers Laila and Majnoon, unrequited love like a certain blogger and a certain Alice. That’s the Layla Eric Clapton alluded to, but I digress.

abstug.jpg

Here’s another, although this tug, Barents Sea, to be profiled later, on a wall next to a graving dock. I love these obscure bodies of water K-Sea calls up in their fleet names, but again I digress.

So I’ll digress one last time: these fotos remind me of stories I heard from my father. A herdsman/dairy farmer all his life, he spent his adolescence in wartime Netherlands milking cows in a pasture beside a canal. Sitting on a one-leg stool beside the cow, he looked upward to see canal traffic pass as he mindlessly handmilked the small herd that was his charge. Oh the weirdness of living in the low country: looking up–skyward–to see a ship pass. Hmm: shades of Chris van Allsburg‘s Wreck of the Zephyr, one of the best kids’ books ever, Zephyr being a sailboat named for a wind. Buy the book for someone–maybe yourself–this season.

Oh, and send me your “wall vessel” shots so that we can develop the range of this foto-subgenre.

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