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Dispatches

The latest buzz from the bee world; Boston’s Fenway Park hits 100; a London shoe company makes its pointe; art runs amok at an ancient Thai temple; shipping out to sea with Billy Campbell

VANCOUVER

SAILS PROJECTION
“The Killing” star and ex-landlubber Billy Campbell contemplates life at sea

In the waters just beyond Coal Harbour, Billy Campbell pulls his jacket tight against the morning chill. But the star of AMC’s slow-burning hit “The Killing” doesn’t seem to mind the temperature, nor the fact that — even though he’s an avid sailor who’s crewed aboard tall ships in some of the world’s choppiest waters — today he’s skimming along calm seas in a rented 17-foot motorboat because he doesn’t have a license to rent a sailboat in Canada. He is still very much in his element.

Campbell wasn’t always a seafarer. When he was growing up in Charlottesville, Va., his only exposure to the sea was through books and movies. During a 2001 hiatus from the Emmy-winning relationship drama “Once and Again,” however, he got the opportunity to try his hand sail-training aboard a tall ship in Sweden.

Three years later, he followed that up with a 14-month around-the-world voyage aboard a deep-ocean barque (an old-fashioned vessel with three or more masts). It was then that he had what he thinks may be his perfect moment (“tacking along somewhere in the South Seas at seven or eight knots to the breeze of the trade wind”), but he also caught a glimpse of his own mortality, when the ship was caught in a squall off Namibia’s Skeleton Coast. “That was the one time I thought, ‘Well, OK, here we go,'” he says. “It was fine, though. You learn to trust and respect the people around you.”

Then Campbell — who’s building his own 48-foot sailboat in Nova Scotia — spots an eagle in a tree along the coast. “I remember sailing off the coast of Vancouver Island. I was in this cove, completely alone. I looked up and saw five eagles in the air. Five. How great is that?” —ALEX STRACHAN

PHOTOGRAPH BY BRIAN BOWEN SMITH/AUGUST IMAGE

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