Like a Tugboat, You May Be Small But You Are Powerful!

Tugboat pushes tanker into parking place
Tugboat pushes tanker into parking place in the port at Livorno, Italy
“Like a Tugboat, You May Be Small But You Are Powerful!” by Joan Y. Edwards
While on board the Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship Enchantment of the Seas on September 30, 2023 we stopped for the day in the port of Livorno, Italy.  My daughter, Mollie and I went ashore and toured the Canal there on a little boat. That afternoon Mollie and I set on deck and watched the ships go by. I noticed a big tanker being led by a rope by a Tug Boat.   I noticed as more of the ship came in view, there was another Tug Boat behind it and they were going to help park the big tanker. Oh my goodness! Parallel parking at its most difficult level!
Tugboats are small but powerful!
Zahra Ahmed says in Marine that an average tug boat has 680-3400 horsepower engines (500-2500 kW), but boats which are larger and venture out into deep waters have engines with a power close to hp (20000 kW) and a tonnage power ratio ranging between 2.20-4.50 tons for large tugs and 4.0-9.5 tons for harbor tugs.
Below is a video that is approximately 30 minutes long of the tugboats helping park the tanker. They first got it in front of the parking space. Then they pushed it in from the front.  The front tugboat stayed at the front. People on small boats tied the ropes from the ship to the dock in 3 places.  Tugboats untied the ropes that attached the tanker to them.
It was truly fascinating to watch. We even got to see another boat being escorted by tugboats. If you watch and listen to the video, you will hear me and my daughter, Mollie. My phone stopped recording right before the tugboats actually left the scene. I am very thankful that we were able to witness this and tell you about it.

Remember that although you may feel small, God gives you strength, energy, and knowledge to help you survive and park yourself into the places that allow you to be the best you can possibly be.

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Never Give Up
Joan Y. Edwards, Author
Copyright © 2009-2023 Joan Y. Edwards

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Zahra Ahmed. “What Are Tugboats?”

8 thoughts on “Like a Tugboat, You May Be Small But You Are Powerful!”

  1. JOan- It’s just like you to watch a tugboat and think of application to life. I am a tugboat–and so are you!! Hugs, Carol

    This reminded me of the concept of “Coming alongside” in the Bible: Paraklesis can be translated that way. 2 ” Corinthians 1:4 who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort (paraklesis = act of emboldening another in belief or course of action) with which we ourselves are comforted by God….6 But if we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; or if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which is effective in the patient enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer”

    1. Dear Carol,
      Thank you very much for writing. I’m honored that you enjoyed my comparison of a tugboat to each of us in life. To think they are so small and yet so powerful is mind-boggling. Not only can tugboats pull;they also can push against the side of a tanker and push it into its parking space that it could not do on its own. That is so like us, that sometimes we need that extra push from God to help us maneuver our paths to find just the right spot for us.

      Thanks for sending me the concept of coming alongside from the scripture. I am so thankful that you and I are alongside each other. One time, I might help you. Another time, you might help me.

      Enjoy your day, mighty little tugboat!

      Never Give Up

  2. Joan,
    Congratulations on getting to witness this! Thanks so much for sharing it with us.I know you brought home so many more special moments.. So happy for you!

    1. Dear Linda,
      Thank you for writing! I am glad you liked that I got to witness the tugboats parking the huge tanker! It was an experience I treasure.

      I hope you have a wonder-filled Thanksgiving
      Never Give Up

  3. Hey Joan! The title intrigued me and reminded of how the power of one can change the course of events. Like the little engine that could, the small tug boat(s) moved tons! Your posts always make a difference in how I see myself in this big earth.

    1. Dear Joan Reid,
      Thank you for writing! I am honored that you say my posts help make a difference in how you see yourself in this big earth! Oh my! Thank you.

      You, like the tugboat, have incredible power! God will lead you and guide you!

      Never Give Up

  4. Joan
    We were both at a Highlights conference together quite a few years ago. I have read a few of your blogs, but this tugboat one is exactly what I needed to read. We critiqued each others picture book manuscripts. It is groups like that and people like that encouraged me to be a little tugboat! I published my The Very Naughty Puppy picture book this year. It has not been an easy
    process. Writing the book and self-publishing were more work than I even could imagine. It was people that I met along the way like you that made it all worth it.
    Was your picture book about an umbrella and rain?
    Thanks Joan

    1. Dear Mary,
      How wonderful to hear from you. The Highlights workshop experience with you was great! I’m glad we’ve stayed connected. That you read my blog and remembered me as helping you touches my heart. Thank you. Wow! You self-published your book, “The Very Naughty Puppy!” How exciting. Would you like to do an interview on my blog? I would be honored to have your story here. To encourage others to never give up! I am very proud of you! My story was Aunt Sophie’s Biscuits but I like the idea of an umbrella and rain.

      Never Give Up

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