Some of the younger fishermen talk of the sea like it is the battlefield or an enemy. But Santiago doesn’t think this way. He speaks of his love for the sea and all its creatures. You can have reverence for an enemy but I don’t think the fish or the...
Some of the younger fishermen talk of the sea like it is the battlefield or an enemy. But Santiago doesn’t think this way. He speaks of his love for the sea and all its creatures. You can have reverence for an enemy but I don’t think the fish or the sea can be considered Santiago’s enemies: from his or an outside perspective.
Time and old age are his enemies. Santiago still has a fairly youthful outlook on life, but his body is old and this is one of the contributing factors to why he loses the fish. He fights valiantly, but he is overwhelmed by his age as well the long distance he has to sail back.
Although he is older, he is still a great fisherman. He proved it by catching the great fish; even though he lost it. Since he is still a great fisherman, physically weaker but certainly wiser, I’d say one of his other enemies is bad luck. Interpret that any way you want: in terms of destiny or just dumb luck. Santiago relies on skill more than luck. But before catching the great fish, his slump was described as though it was unprecedented in his fishing career. He can always rely on his skill but any fisherman or businessman is subject to a drought or a recession. This is the ebb and flow of social and natural life. In the greater scheme of things, at this point in his life, he fishes because he loves it and he does so in order to survive. Here, I’d say his enemies are the feeling of uselessness and nature itself. He needs to fish to feel meaningful and he loves nature but must combat its effects (his old age and the continuing supply of fish).