The Old Man and the Sea Part III Summary

     When the fish finally emerged from the water, the old man saw that the fish was two feet longer than his boat. By noon his left hand had finally uncramped. The old man, who believed he was not religious, proceeded to say ten Hail Marys and ten Our Fathers in the hopes of catching the fish. He decided to add bait once again to his short line in case he needed to eat on the boat a second night. He thought about baseball and how he didn't know the results of yesterday's games, and he hoped that he would not run into any sharks as the fish continued to pull the boat and tire himself out.

     The old man remembered a time in his youth when he had arm wrestled an African American. The match had last twenty-four hours as bets were made. Finally, the next day the old man, known then as Santiago El Campeon, beat his opponent. The old man was called The Champion and went on to win more matches, but eventually he decided it wasn't good for his fishing to continue to arm wrestle.

     He saw an airplane pass overhead, which scared up a school of flying fish. The man tried to imagine what it would be like in an airplane since he had never flown. Then a dolphin caught on his small line, so he reeled him in and clubbed him. Once again he put bait on the small line and sent it out. Then he decided that he would put the oars across the stern of the boat that night to help tire out the swordfish. It was getting dark, so the old man decided to rest for a few hours. Though he rested, he did not sleep, and he knew he needed to. Next, he slit open the dolphin and found two flying fish inside. The old man ate half of the dolphin and one of the flying fish. He cursed himself again for not having brought salt or limes, or perhaps trying to splash salt water into the boat then allow the water to dry leaving the salt behind. Nevertheless, he ate the unpleasant fish without becoming sick.

     Next, he found a way to wind the line around his hands and push his weight onto it, so he could fall asleep without losing the fish. Many dreams passed through his head, of porpoises, beaches, and lions. Suddenly, the man awoke when the line jerked him forward. It sliced through his left hand as he let the line out while the fish jumped out in the water. The speed of the line cut his hand badly, but he tried to let it slice along the calloused parts instead of the tender ones. He knew this moment would come, and he did not want to lose this fish, whom he considered a friend.

     As the fish slowed, the old man was able to sit up and remove his face from the slice of dolphin on which it had landed. He washed the dolphin carcass off his face because he worried it would nauseate him. Next, he let each of his hands wash off in the water to assist in their healing. Then he ate the other flying fish for nourishment as he watched the sun rise on his third day out at sea.

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