This fishing boat has been with my family since my father bought it from the Royal National Lifeboat Institute in 2002. My father grew up in a town in Suffolk, England, which had once been a major hub of England’s cod and haddock fishing industry, but, by the time my father was born, had declined due to overfishing and pollution. The town had very few prospects for my father, and he vowed that he would escape the area, even if it meant leaving the generational home of his family. His journey took him from Norwich to London to Kildare and eventually to New York. Although the fishing boat itself is worth only a few pounds, it serves to remind my father of his home and how far he has come.
The fishing boat holds significance not only for my father, but also for myself. When I lived in England, I visited Ireland very frequently to see my mother’s side of the family, which involved taking the ferry at Holyhead in Wales. In turn, when we moved to Ireland, the ferry served as the bridge between us and our English family. The fishing boat model reminds me of a time when the extended family I grew up with was only a few hundred kilometers of ocean away, rather than the many thousands of kilometers which now separate us. Furthermore, the fishing boat reminds me that no matter how far away you end up, you carry a piece of your hometown with you wherever you go.
– Sean Crisp