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Why is Man so fascinated by the sea? It’s the pursuit of the bounty from and made possible by those waters, I suppose. From subsistence fishermen through the Phoenician trade ships to the New England whalers—from the Spanish galleons hauling treasure from the New World, to the supertankers bringing oil to it—each sailor saw the sea as a way to make a living. Even today, we marvel at the unfettered ease of shipping (note the term) across its surface.
There is an arresting strangeness to the sea that no one can overcome. No matter how much time we spend offshore, we simply cannot become totally familiar with it. Perhaps it’s because the human eye cannot penetrate the sea’s surface and gaze into its depths; it’s sort of like drilling a hole into the earth to search for oil and gas.
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