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Why do you think Coelho chose a crystal shop in The Alchemist?Why would Paulo Coelho...

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ahsstudent | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted August 16, 2010 at 5:17 AM via web

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Why do you think Coelho chose a crystal shop in The Alchemist?

Why would Paulo Coelho choose crystal over other occupations such as a baker or a someone that sells something else?

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tinicraw | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted June 5, 2012 at 8:10 PM (Answer #1)

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The crystal shop was a good set up for an occupation for Santiago because it gave him a way in which to learn more about his enthusiasm. He did this by seeing ways that he could improve on the shop's situation.  First, he improved the income of the shop by putting crystal on shelves outside of the shop to catch travelers' attention.  Then, he capitalized on the crystal shop being at a major point on a hiking trail by serving tea in the crystal to thirsty hikers.  This gave the hikers a different and unique experience. If the shop keeper had sold hookahs at that point on the trail, the demand would not have been strong at that location. If the shop were just another tea shop, it would not have been unique without the crystal. Among other lessons, it is through selling crystal that the boy practices his knowledge about following omens in order to capitalize on his creativity.

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