All the boats met in one spot for a big meeting over who could fish in a certain spot. France started the row because the Italian fishermen crossed over the international fishing lines in to the French waters. The Italians refused to accept it was their fishermen who had fished the French fish and denied it was their boat had been crossing the line.
Hence, there was a call for a mass meeting with every captain with a fishing boat from both the French and Italian fleets attending. The meeting started a dawn and went on long past lunch time. Afternoon tea came and went. Dinner was eaten and cleared away. Finally, as the sleeping Captains left they were not sure they had reached the right choice but they were so tired of talking they left.
The French put a strong line of net along the whole international fishing boarder. It was very expensive and many French people were very unhappy about the cost. There were lots of strikes but the fleet captains said it was needed and the French government raised enough money to pay for it. The net was strong and had larger enough holes for the fish to cross back and forth but not the boats. In the beginning things went well. The Italians stayed their side and the French stayed behind the net. The French fishermen were able to catch fish once more.
However, it did cause a few problems. When the tourist and holiday makers wanted to go on boat trips they could not cross over. No one could not travel between French and Italy by boat. The airports were busy and the train companies put their prices up. In France, pasta was too expensive to eat and people had to saved up many weeks before they could go out for a pizza. The baguette almost disappeared from the Italian supermarkets and French Gateau was eaten on special occasions.
Some boats were caught in the next and many lives were lost. The last accident was a large ferry who became tangled up in the net on Christmas Eve and 153 lives were lost. This caused the French to take down the net. There was a lot of talk about what a waste of money that was. But everyone was secretly happy that the boats could travel between both counties once again. The Italian captains agreed to have trackers put on their boats so they could prove they were not crossing over the international fishing lines. To help this happen the French captains agreed to have trackers in their boats too.
Picture: Boats by Julia Royhman from Creative Writing by Eva Glettner (by permission)