A Sea of Broken Dreams #181 (P)
Rose Island, Sealand and the MS Satoshi
Last week we talked about the First Seastead. But the modern fascination with abandoning life on land and heading out to the oceans is older and more fundamental. Still, attempts to live on the sea never seem to end well.
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Beyond the sea, somewhere
Somewhere beyond the sea
Somewhere waiting for me
My lover stands on golden sands
And watches the ships that go sailin' (Bobby Darin)
The sea has intrigued us with it promise of a different, better life throughout the history of mankind, only to consistently destroy these dreams in cataclysmic floods.
Plato located mythical Atlantis somewhere “beyond the Pillars of Hercules,” sunk in the depths of the Atlantic Ocean. Tolkien used the Atlantis myth as a basis for the fictional island of Númenor, which is destroyed by Ilúvatar and sinks beneath the waves. Peaceful and prosperous ancient Minoan culture might have been destroyed by a tsunami wave from the eruption of the volcano on Thera, today’s Santorini island. Tortured Captain Nemo, driven by his desire to leave civilisation, finds peace on his submarine and in the depths of the oceans — but here too the sea turns out to be a treacherous place and in the end it swallows up the Nautilus and its captain. For Bobby Darin as for Odysseus, the endless sea is a symbol of unbridgeable distance, an obstacle to overcome rather than a way to connect with the object of his desire.
On the 1st of May 1968, engineer Giorgio Rosa declared the independence of a platform he had built on the Adriatic Sea. As the world was gripped by student demonstrations, Vietnam anti-war protests, the Prague Spring and its bloody suppression and the first exploratory flights of the Apollo program to the moon, Rosa was dreaming of a better country: one that would be peaceful, free, independent, far from the madness of the world all around him.
And so he went off and built it himself.
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