The dark cabin
Near the bow is the main cabin, where imagination flies at the pace of the wind, or simply sings with the waves of the port. At the stern is a secondcabin, which I call The Dark Cabin. The result of each voyage is reflected there. Maps and geographic charts, whether real or fictional, see the light in a space where light is paradoxically scarce.
I don’t visit that space every day. Doing so involves staying more than half the day working in reddishdarkness: the materials used there require that kind of lighting. The days designated for such work are premeditated and scheduled. As I stay in this cabin, the ship is adrift.
Hours pass and at the end of the day one or more maps are finished to be shown to those people who know about my travelsand wait in a hurry in some port. To them I dedicate these rectangles of paper that will one day be as faded as my hair: there is no map or navy thatresists the onslaught of the years.
The dark cabin also officiates as a Machine Room. My ship’s devices are electrical and mechanical. There is no technological sophistication. Just theessentials to get to the destination: just some instruments that direct the light, and some substances that allow me to draw maps. The enlargers, radiating light from their lenses, look like headlights in the dark that, in their work of printing, guide me towards the final destination: the finished photographic chart.
For this humble navigator, everything is unified there: at that moment the map and the territory are the same thing, just as the shipand the sailor are identical.