The old man and the sea

Monday, July 28th, 2008

The old man and the sea

There have been a number of books that have resonated with me years after I have read them. Ernest Hemingway’s The old man and the sea is one of those books.

There’s a passage that always comes back to me when I’ve found myself facing a tough or difficult situation; it comes at a time in the book when Santiago, an aging Cuban fisherman, is trying to bring his catch, a giant marlin, back to the shore, but the big fish is being mauled by sharks.

‘But man is not made for defeat,’ he said. ‘A man can be destroyed but not defeated.’

‘Don’t think, old man,’ he said aloud. ‘Sail on this course and take it when it comes.’

It is silly not to hope, he thought. Besides I believe it is a sin.

By the way, the image used to illustrate this post is from a painting by John McGlynn, a talented UK artist.