Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Restless Wave

"Eternal Father, strong to save,
Whose arm hath bound the restless wave,
Who bidd'st the mighty ocean deep
Its own appointed limits keep;
Oh, hear us when we cry to Thee,
For those in peril on the sea!"
The Greek registry cargo ship Ian M had been wandering
outside the harbor entrance north of here for two days at

I'm not sure there was any peril--it's been breezy, but
a calm sea--yesterday afternoon, finally, four or five
tugs showed up to help her (Ian? him?) in

Enlarge and you can see the line by which the bow tug
is actually pulling Ian M

Right outside our window; notice how high she is riding,
the bulbous bow clearly visible, also the screw aft and
rudder; this is a big ship; according to vesseltracker.com,
she is 292m in length--you can just round that off as
three football fields--couldn't find her displacement

Under way, very slowly; steady as you go...

Finally, safely in the jetty

The Black Sea is such an interesting phenomenon, a huge inland sea--about twice the size of all five of the Great Lakes, but partially saline, with both inflow from and outflow to the Aegean and the Mediterranean, and, ultimately, the Atlantic. It is fed by three of the world's great rivers, the Don, the Dnieper, and the Danube, draining much of Europe and Russia. Near the Crimea, it is more than 7,000 feet deep. And its fishing and maritime commerce go back to the earliest human times. Below a couple hundred meters, it is anoxic, which means that wrecks discovered on its bottom are remarkably well preserved. Seeing this big ship is a reminder that the Black Sea is a major body of water, no mere inland lake. And in our times, of course, it has major environmental problems, not the least caused by bilge dumping by big ships like this.

Important PS: some further research has revealed that Ian M is a brand new ship, manufactured by the Daewoo Works in nearby Mangela, and that he/she is undergoing sea trials.

Big ship-building works a few miles north of Vama Veche

There he/she is

PPS  In addition to becoming a beach-comber I have also become a ship-spotter. So far there has been only the one ship.

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