Costa Concordia Cruise Ship
An Italian passenger cruise ship the Costa Concordia ran aground and tipped over late Friday the 13th, killing at least three people, injuring 30 and leaving up to 40 others still missing.
The ship struck a reef that got stuck inside the left side, making it (the ship) lean over and take on a lot of water in the space of two, three minutes.
The ship’s Italian captain, Francesco Schettino, was detained late Saturday and is being investigated for manslaughter and abandoning ship. Officials say the captain appears to have taken the vessel close to shore in a dangerous manner, Reuters says.
Passengers described a scene reminiscent of “Titanic” — which sank 100 years ago this April.
The sinking of the Costa Concordia brings this parable to mind;
Once upon a time, a wise man went to the docks to watch as ships entered and left the port. He noticed that, as one ship sailed out toward the open sea, all the people on the dock cheered and wished it well. Meanwhile, another ship entered the port and docked. By and large, the crowd ignored it.
The wise man addressed the people saying, "You are looking at things backwards! When a vessel leaves, you do not know what lays ahead or what its end will be. So there really is no reason to cheer. But when a vessel enters the harbor and arrives safely home, that is something to make you feel joy."
Life is that journey and we are the vessel. When a child is born, we celebrate. When a soul returns home, we mourn. Yet if we viewed life on earth the way the wise man viewed the ship, perhaps we too could say, "The vessel has gone on its journey, it has weathered the storms of life, it has finally entered the harbor and now it is safely home." [Midrash, Shemot Rabbah]