News of the sinking of the HMS Bounty triggered memories long forgotten of my personal connection with the grand ship. I and my future spouse were there when it first took form in a Lunenburg shipyard 50 odd years' ago. The ship was a replica of a vessel with a history worthy of a Hollywood blockbuster -- which, of course, happened.
Going to Lunenburg to see the ship take shape was an adventure. We had very little television, no iphone, or ipad in the early sixties. Here, an 18th century historical drama was being brought to life in the form of wood, caulking and tar. Most Nova Scotians knew the story. On these visits, one week the keel was laid, on another visit the ship's ribs curved up like a well picked turkey rack. Months later standing under the bow, the ship looked massive. Finally in 1960 the day of launching arrived and so did we. As it moved down the slipway we knew we had watched the HMS Bounty come to life, again.
This morning, the ship is at the bottom of the ocean as are the initials the two of us carved on the keel that day in our own private celebration, when no one was looking. Today, fifty years later, Bounty's sinking and the loss of life is, indeed, sad and personal.
(Merchant Marine Published November 2011 in the Reader's Corner of the Halifax Herald: click here to read article.)