Sindbad and the Old Man of the Sea.

In the early years of my childhood I was very fond of the character Sinbad, the sailor and his marvellous and adventurous voyages to far off lands. Now after about two decades later I only remember one of the many voyages that Sinbad made from his native city of Baghdad to Africa and South East Asia. He had fantastic adventures going to different countries and meeting supernatural beings.

So what I recall of Sinbad’s story is something like this.

It is a far off land and Sinbad the sailor has just landed after losing his ship and crew in a violent shipwreck. He is the only survivor. Thanks to the broken piece of a wooden drum that carried him for hours and brought him to the shore.

Sinbad cursed the fates, but as a strong and dedicated adventurer, left all the sorrows and pain back and started to explore the new place. Soon he realised that the fates were not so cursed and there were fresh water streams, beautiful birds and huge fruits of all kinds hanging from the branches of the trees. The sky was blue and the earth soft and warm. He was delighted by the blissfulness of this never-known piece of land.

As he was still wandering in this newly discovered paradise he saw an old man sitting g peacefully in a hammock of willow fronds. Sinbad rubbed his eyes because what he was seeing did not look real. The old man wore an outfit that seemed to be made of leaves and his skin was the colour of wood. He had a long beard and his legs were as thin as threads.

‘’Salaam’’ he greeted. ‘’Are you a man?’’

In answer the man raised his arm and beckoned to Sinbad.

‘’Can I help you by any means?’’ Sinbad asked

After a while by gesturing and nodding the man showed Sinbad that he needs to be carried across the island to the other side to eat fruits.

‘’Poor fellow must have lost the use of his voice and legs’’ Sinbad thought as he knelt down.

At once the man leaped upon Sinbad’s back and Sinbad began walking across the island.

When they reached the far fruit trees, Sinbad stopped and knelt again, but the man did not climb off his back but instead gripped him more tightly.

‘’Go easy there’’ said Sinbad but the evil grip only tightened. The man had twisted his rope like legs around Sinbad’s neck.

It is narrated that Sinbad carried the old man on his shoulders for months. The dreadful monster never slept. He kicked and slapped but Sinbad could do nothing at all. It took a magical wine to get discovered and Sinbad’s brilliance to make the old man drink it. It was only then that the old man got drunk and fell asleep, falling off Sinbad’s shoulders.

In a different version of the story the magical wine was never found and Sinbad died on the island with this bearded old man still tangled to his neck.

Pakistan first knelt down for the bearded cult in 1974 by declaring Ahmadi Muslims as non-Muslims. In 1984 the monster was in full control of the state and its institutions. In 2011 it still is!

If we are living in the later part of the story, the magical wine will not be found and Pakistan is then destined to die a painful and pathetic death whilst the Mullah cult will start waiting for another shipwreck that will bring some other Sinbad to it someday.

Photo by Tom Winckels on Unsplash

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