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From a shipyard near the Black Sea, this very “white” Holland-class offshore patrol ship came into the sixth boro a day or so ago.   A lot needs to be unpacked in that sentence, so here goes:

a Royal Netherlands Navy vessel identified as P842, third in a class of four which began with P840 (shown here in a 2016 tugster post) and named for the province(s) of Holland (a North Holland and a South Holland province exist), was built by a Damen shipyard on the Romanian Danube port city of Galați, Romania.  P842, named for the province of Friesland (see the banner on the gangway above), was delivered to the Royal Netherlands Navy almost exactly 10 years ago. I quote from the wikipedia article here:  she is “painted a new light blue-gray color, which supposedly has a better camouflage-effect than the standard light-grey paint used by other RNLN ships.”  Yes, there are many grades of “white.”

As to the stealth design, it reminds me of a French vessel that was in nearly the same location a warm April a dozen years ago. Other Dutch navy ships going back 14 years and including a submarine in the sixth boro can be seen here.  Other Damen-built vessels can be seen here.

I’m just conjecturing here, but based on the image of P840 in a link above, the ship color a decade ago was the same as that of the small boat here on the davit. 

To bring out that light blue-gray color, let me close with a slightly adjusted version of the top photo.  Maybe time for some new paint.

All photos, WVD.

Skimming through the information about Galați, Romania, and looking at the mouths of the Danube have given me a much more complex appreciation of the history and geography of the countries around even only this part of the Black Sea, a place very much in the news these days.   This might be an interesting river tour, although it does not go all the way to the Black Sea.  Maybe someone can tell if tours exist that continue from Bucharest to –say–Istanbul.

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