For 137 years, ‘Does the boat sail?’ was the most frequently asked question by people who depended on the ferries of the Provincial Steamboat Services (PSD) to reach their destination. The ferry services of the Province of Zeeland connected different regions that were separated by the sea. In fierce storms or dense fog, it remained to be seen whether the ferries would put to sea. 15 March 2003, when the tunnel was opened that made the last areas accessible by car, was the day when the PSD became history. In the build-up to the shutdown, director Joost Seelen captured a few crossings on film. Soberly, he shows the equally sober Zeeland natives. Passengers and officials of various PSD services seem to undergo the imminent parting as an inevitable fate. No mournful words or downcast eyes. The only evidence of emotion is produced by sounds: cars honking farewell, ferryboats that sound their foghorns and a playing band. And by the realisation that in the tunnel you will never see the splendid vistas you saw from the boat.
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