The Floating Book Fair

Posted on April 13, 2006

Well, here's something we've never heard of before: a floating book fair has just docked in the port of Chennai, India. The fair is held on the oldest ocean-going sailing passenger ship in existence, according to the Guinness Book of Records.

The fair, which will be inaugurated by Tamil Nadu Governor Surjit Singh Barnala on board the German ship, will offer more than 6,000 educational books in English and Tamil.

Emilie Noteboom, Project Coordinator for Doulos´┐Ż visit to Chennai, told PTI that it is the ship's third visit to Chennai after visiting over 500 ports in more than 100 nations. "Run by a German Non-Profit Organisation 'Good Books for All' it seeks to bring 'Knowledge, Help and Hope' to the world," she said.

Doulos arrived at Chennai port on April 8 amidst much fanfare with the 320-member crew donning their national costumes and bearing flags, she said. The book fair will be open to the public from April 13 to May 8, a press release said.

The name of the ship, "Doulos," means "servant" in Greek; the ship's mission is to serve and offer vital literary resources to the world. The Doulos was built in 1914, just two years after the Titanic. The Doulos is owned by a German non-profit agency called "Good Books for all."

We love book fairs, although some might want to pop a Dramamine before boarding. Let's just hope that the "world's oldest passenger ship" has the world's greatest maintenance crew.

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