If you were a sailor on a ship, what would you do when you weren’t working?Except when there’s a storm a sailor doesn’t have to work all the time. So what would you do?You could read or sleep. You could talk with your friends-if they weren’t working. Or you could walk around the deck and look at the sky and ocean. But on a long, long trip you would probably get tired of these things.
Many sailors spend their spare time cutting or whittling things out of wood. Some sailors patiently carved small models of big things. A sailor made this model of a ship and put it in the bottle. Some people think that after the ship was made, it was taken to a bottle factory and that a bottle was made around the ship. What do you think?
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First the sailor whittled out all the different parts of the ship. Then carefully he fitted each part to the next one. He cut the sails out of cloth and fastened them to the big masts, and to the little masts, called spars.Then he rigged the ship-fastened strings between all the masts and spars and sails to hold them in their proper places.
The masts and spars were too big to go into the bottle any way except endways. So he placed the masts right next to their holes and let them lie back flat on the ship’s deck. Then so-o-o-o carefully he slid everything endways into the bottle.Now we’re ready for the big trick. Before the sailor slid the ship into the bottle, he tied a special long string to the masts and let end of the string hang out. With the ship snugly inside the bottle, he pulled the string and presto-up came the masts and sails.
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After the sailor cut the string off there was no way to tell how the boat got into the bottle. It looked as if it had always been there. Sailors also used to carve pictures in their spare time.The oldest carvings of ship models that we know about were made by the Egyptians-the same people who made the great stone pyramids
Far south in the ocean there are beautiful islands where palm trees and shining green plants grow. In the sun and the rain the plants grow fast and big. The people in these South Sea islands make toy boats for their children from the nuts and seeds dropped by these giant plants.