19 February 2008

And all I wanted was a Chris-Craft

A friend told me about a man in the Netherlands who is building a version of Noah's Ark. I just checked out a video, Walking the Bible, a PBS show, from the library which traces where things happened in the first five books of the bible. One of the things I watched on the video just yesterday was on Mt. Ararat in Turkey, where Noah's Ark supposedly came to rest after the flood.

I love wooden boats. If I win the lottery I'm planning on buying an antique Chris-Craft. When we lived in Seattle, there was a neat boat restoration/sailing lessons place on Lake Union called the Center for Wooden Boats. It was one place my husband always wanted to go on the weekends and where he learned to sail. I'm sure if he cashes the lottery check before I do, we will end up with a sail boat. I guess as long as it's wooden, I'll survive.

From the BBC: Dutchman builds modern Noah's Ark

Mr Huibers started work on the ark last summer. Dutchman Johan Huibers is building a working replica of Noah's Ark as a testament to his Christian faith. The 47-year-old from Schagen, 45km (30 miles) north of Amsterdam, plans to set sail in September through the interior waters of the Netherlands.

Johan's Ark is a fifth of the size of Noah's and will carry farmyard animals.

Mr Huibers, who plans to open the vessel as a religious monument and zoo, hopes the project will renew interest in Christianity in the Netherlands. Although Mr Huibers has tried to remain true to the ark described in the Bible, Johan's Ark is constructed with American cedar and Norwegian pine, rather than "gopher wood".

'Smell of dung'
According to Genesis, Noah kept seven pairs of most domesticated animals, and one breeding pair of all other creatures. This will speak very much to children... they'll hear the creak of the wood, smell the smell of the dung.

Johan Huibers
Noah's wife, three sons and three daughters-in-law lived together on the boat for almost a year while the world was flooded. Mr. Huibers' vision is more modest - he said he plans to stock his ark with horses, lambs, chickens and rabbits - mostly baby animals to save space. "This will speak very much to children, because it will give them something tangible to see that Noah's Ark really existed," Mr. Huibers told the Associated Press news agency.

The total cost of the project is estimated to be just under 1m euros (£0.7m; US$1.2m) and was funded with bank loans.

Mr. Huibers plans to charge people to tour the boat and said a drink and religious pamphlet will be included in the admission price. At least 100,000 people will need to visit for the project to break-even financially.

Mr. Huibers said his wife was not very keen on the idea. "She always says: 'Why don't you go dig wells in Ethiopia?'," he said. "I've been involved in projects there before but she understands this is my dream."

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