Sunday, June 1, 2008

The Old Man and the Sea

It’s the title of a novel written by Ernest Hemingway. Well, it’s dark right now and it is so hard to be typing in the dark. I think I’ve read this book somewhere, long, long time ago. I’ve forgotten the content, possibly due to the fact that I’ve read so many books. I’ve watched a really good movie just now. It’s ‘The Guardian’. I’ve been waiting for Astro to view that movie and now I can watch it. The message in this movie is very clear, about how people save others. I really like the phrase “so others can live” that is highlighted in this movie. It got me thinking. There are a lot of people out there who are willing to sacrifice for others. I always hated the sea. No, not hate. I am afraid of the sea. I’m afraid of the waves. I always get this feeling as if the waves are pulling me closer to the ocean and when they do, I’m sure that I won’t come back. Maybe it’s the fact that I almost drowned when I was little. It’s weird. I’m afraid of the sea while my whole life has always been near to the sea. I grow up in a small town near the beach, and the beach has become like almost every day destination for me. My parents’ hometown, in Terengganu, is very near to the South China Sea. I face the South China Sea every day, and every time I see it, I feel a bit scared. That’s why, I really respect the ones who are willing to go to the sea and save others in life threatening situation, like in the movie. The Coast Guards, they are a people who are brave.

Thinking about the sea, there is this old man. He is a brave old man. He was born after the World War II and he said it was a very crucial period. They had to live in poverty and they don’t get enough food to eat. When he was little, he had to walk for miles to get to school. During recess, he said he don’t have enough money to eat, so he just watch other people eat. Then there was this girl, she will throw a ten cent change to him. He will use that money to buy nasi lemak, which was very cheap at that time. Then, when he went home, he always found that there was nothing to eat because they don’t have enough money to buy food. I know that he would be a very good student, a very brilliant one, if not that he only managed to study until he was twelve due to poverty. Then, when he was fourteen, he had to travel for miles across the country for his source of income. No money, no education, no proper job. That’s how it always happens to unfortunate people who have the will to carry on to learn something, but they don’t have the money to do it. They say money cannot buy happiness, but I believe so. Without money, you won’t be that happy. You should have at least some money for basic needs, like education. If I get to learn what I want to learn, then I wouldn’t be happier.

This old man struggles to live as a fisherman. He needs to support his family, so he works as a fisherman, like his father. They are the brave men who are willing to risk their life for food for their families. This old man’s father was lost at sea. He was never found. Watching that movie, when the coast guard was lost at sea in the end, struck a chord on me and made me remember the story of this old man. How would you feel if your father was lost at sea, and that his body was never found, and all you can do is thinking that he was there, somewhere in the open ocean, buried deep down under the ocean’s floor, resting in peace.

The sea. It’s a very big place, bigger than the biggest land. Bigger than Russia. It is neverending. There’s no end to the stretch of water. It’s just plain water, waving in tremendous speed that could wipe an entire community.  The power of the water is so strong, and the tsunami in 2004 has proved us so. People should be scared with the One who created the water and gave such an amazing power to the water. It could serve as a warning to people. Only the people who have witnessed the power of the ocean will understand it.

The old man once told me a story. Once, the wind and the waves were really strong, and they were at sea. Their boat was sinking, and there was nothing to do. The man was lucky, he clung his hand on a piece of wood and swam all the way to the shore. Or else, he wouldn’t be alive now. He would be like his father, lost at sea. I really admire this old man. Despite the fact that he was poor, and he didn’t get enough education, he was able to raise his children and there was nothing else more important to his children than to receive education. It’s the spirit of the old man and the experience he gained from being at sea. The sea has taught him and now it is his turn to teach his children about the sea. Our life is like the sea. Full of waves, and sometimes swimming will not save our lives, because the current will be too strong for us to handle. That’s when a miracle is needed. And how to get that miracle? We need to pray for it.

1 comment:

~aSma'~ said...

sea..have experience drown when i was little..when floating..huhu..not save by any people..alhmdulillah i managed to grab someone's shirt dat time when struggling for air..i could hear my parents voice from inside of d water searching for me..i think He still give me opportunity in dis life..for some certain purpose..big purpose..yup..we all hv role in this world..good blog erni! keep it up (^_^)