“In this parade, we had a symbol of the past, Belem, and young people, therefore the future” | EUROtoday

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From our particular correspondent in Marseille – The Belem nautical parade off the coast of Marseille on Wednesday occurred in a joyful live performance of foghorns, bagpipes, sirens and different horns. Report from the center of this primary Olympic celebration earlier than the flame lands on French soil.

And all of the sudden, in the midst of the waves of the northern harbor of Marseille, the Olympics celebration lastly begins. Forgotten the damaged guarantees, the prospect of a black summer time in transport, the geopolitical divisions and the French protests… The time for a nautical parade, the time has lastly come for pleasure because the Olympic flame I'm about to hit the bottom.

Escorted by 1,024 boats, the Belem, the three-masted ship which introduced again the image of recent Olympicism from Greece, carried out its maritime parade within the northern harbor of Marseille, off the coast of Estaque, on May 8. Ships of all sizes and kinds got here to greet him after his lengthy crossing with a joyful live performance of foghorns, bagpipes, sirens and different horns.

A sailboat that joined the Belem nautical parade.
1024 ships responded for the nautical parade. © Pierre René-Worms, France Médias Monde

A joyful, well-organized maritime chaos

Along the coast, on the seashores and even from the highest of the coves, crowds gathered to admire the spectacle.

A chaos completely organized by the maritime prefecture which doesn’t hesitate to name to order the reckless who brush too carefully towards their comrades or the smug who need to go too far to the entrance of the outdated coaching ship. Get out of the way!”, “Go behind!”, calls a gendarmerie officer to order.

The three-masted ship crisscrossed the waters surrounding Marseille from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., taking a break around 1 p.m. to go and greet the Olympic Marina where the Olympic sailing events will take place. He thus sailed alongside the French Olympic team of Hélène Noesmoen and Lauriane Nolot before joining the popular parade.

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Axel Mazella from the French kitefoil team parade around Belem.
Axel Mazella from the French kitefoil group parade round Belem. © Pierre René-Worms, France Médias Monde

A “great” parade

Among the spectators of the occasion, Yassmina Ahmada Ibouroi, 16 years outdated. The highschool scholar was in a position to board one of many parade ships. She has a tough time discovering the phrases to explain what she skilled: “It was just great. We enjoyed it and learned lots of things about boats… And the Belem!”, enthuses the woman.

“It was the first time I went out to sea. We all loved it,” provides Doria Feng, 17.

“This parade was incredible with all these boats. The Belem is majestic and we were able to see it up close,” says Maxime, a younger Unicef ​​ambassador who was additionally in a position to take part within the parade.

If these three younger individuals have been in a position to take part within the nautical parade, it’s because of the dedication of their respective associations: Télémaque for Doria and Yassmina, Unicef ​​for Maxime.

The first's mission is to restore the social ladder by associating younger individuals from deprived neighborhoods with mentors throughout their center and highschool years. “Our mission is to open up their field of possibilities,” merely summarizes Isabelle Mauries, regional supervisor and mentor of Yassmina.

Isabelle and Yassmina from the Télémaque association.
Isabelle and Yassmina from the Télémaque affiliation. © Romain Houeix, France 24

The second, Unicef, higher often known as an emanation of the UN, strives to make sure respect for the worldwide conference on the rights of the kid, in battle zones but in addition in deprived areas. “We are here to remind you that every child has the same rights, whether they come from northern neighborhoods, rural areas or privileged places,” explains Corinne Noalles.

Opening the world of crusing to everybody

In Marseille, these two associations have established hyperlinks with the Marseille nautical society, of which 102 ships welcomed the Belem, the biggest delegation. Among them, 25 ships divided up 20 younger individuals from every affiliation to introduce them to the fundamentals of navigation and convey to life the historic second of the arrival of the flame.

Among those that made this present day attainable for the godchildren of Télémaque and the Young Ambassadors of Unicef, there may be Bernard Ceas, the communications supervisor of “la Nautique” and proud captain of the “Tintamarre”. Early within the morning, properly earlier than the parade, it was he who organized the distribution among the many ships with kindness and authority.

This morning, a captain didn’t present up as anticipated. No matter, Bernard and “la Nautique” shortly discovered an answer by distributing the 4 “castaways” to different ships. Solidarity of sailors.

For him, crusing is a pleasure, even among the many crowd of 1,024 boats round Belem. He by no means loses his calm and good humor, handles the “Tintamarre” with ease whereas his spouse Martine serves as his eyes on the edges and on the rear of the ship. The two additionally love sharing their ardour.

“We have been working with this network of NGOs for almost two years. We want to show that our group of privileged people and boaters knew how to open up to disadvantaged neighborhoods,” explains the captain, who can be outspoken. “It’s part of the ideal that led to the founding of our association. We want to avoid remaining a closed circle.”

He too will hold fond recollections of his sea journey round Belem. “It was nice,” he minimizes earlier than persevering with: “We had a symbol of the past, Belem, and young people, therefore the future. There was a feeling of transmission.”

Read additionallyEverything it is advisable know concerning the Belem, on which the Olympic flame will sail from Greece

For the deputy mayor of Marseille, Sophie Guérard, the nautical parade and this outing at sea represent a hit and a logo of what the Marseille metropolis needs to venture by the Games.

“It’s important for us to show that all the living forces of the city, we are together,” praises Sophie Guérard, on board the “Tintamarre” as answerable for the place of kids within the metropolis. “Marseille is a global city and it’s very good that the flame is coming because there are all communities, all religions, rich people, middle class people, poor people but we all live very well together!”

And the elected official recalled that the favored pageant will proceed through the Olympics. The crusing occasions can be seen freed from cost from the corniche, pedestrianized for the event.

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