One Ship, Two “Treasures”

I never thought that there could be a connection between these two pictures. One hangs to the left of the entrance to our billiard room, the other hangs on the opposite side.

On April 7th 2015, while Marco had duty, he told me that years ago the crew of the ZHEN HUA 8 had given us a picture of their ship; the illustration with the Chinese characters was presented to us later, on DUCKDALBEN’s 2013 birthday.

By chance, three Chinese seamen from the MSC Romanos were in the club that day, and were happy to translate the texts on both pictures.

And now we know what’s written around the picture of the ZHEN HUA 8:

FRIENDSHIP FOREVER
BETWEEN CHINA AND GERMANY
PRESENT TO HAMBURGER SEAMAN`S CLUB
JUNE 27th, 2005

The tablet contains a “poem“ from Mao Zedong where he expresses his thoughts. I didn’t want to ask the three helpful Chinese seafarers to spend even more of their free time in the club by asking for a detailed translation of the poem. However, our resourceful volunteer Bernd was able to find Mao’s poem in English:

Alone I stand in the autumn cold
On the tip of Orange Island,
The Xiang flowing northward;
I see a thousand hills crimsoned through
By their serried woods deep-dyed,
And a hundred barges vying
Over crystal blue waters.
Eagles cleave the air,
Fish glide in the limpid deep;
Under freezing skies a million creatures contend in freedom.
Brooding over this immensity,
I ask, on this bondless land
Who rules over man's destiny?
I was here with a throng of companions,
Vivid yet those crowded months and years.
Young we were, schoolmates,
At life’s full flowering;
Filled with student enthusiasm
Boldly we cast all restraints aside.
Pointing to our mountains and rivers,
Setting people afire with our words,
We counted the mighty no more than muck.
Remember still
How, venturing midstream, we struck the waters
And the waves stayed the speeding boats?
Mao Zedong

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