The beaches along north west of Phuket Island are commercially less developed due to its remoter location from the island’s main attractions, which makes them comparatively quieter and more relaxing to spend time on the beach. It’s also a great place to catch the sunset over the Andaman Sea. On an evening walk along a stretch of these beaches, I did not notice this lone old fisherman making his way to the shore although the beach was rather desolate, not until he started fishing. With a cast net in hand and a rattan basket tied to the waist to store his catch, there was no mistaking his presence and purpose there.
He immediately reminded me of Santiago, the protagonist in Ernest Hemingway’s famous literary work ‘The Old Man And The Sea’. Very tanned, likely from spending much time under the sun, and wizened, his body nonetheless still strong and agile as intimated by his swift sturdy actions. The old fisherman continuously paced and combed the sea for ‘sweet’ spots to cast his net, skillfully drawing it in, and inspecting it for catch. At times he was successful in landing a catch, at times not.
Fortunately, he was not having ‘salao’ days as was Santiago in Hemingway’s novel. From my observation, what he caught that evening wasn’t bountiful, but probably sufficient to sustain him and his family. Then again, if we live simply, we do not need a lot to sustain ourselves. Wouldn’t you agree?
(Note: Photos captioned with quotes from Hemingway’s The Old Man And The Sea novel)
All photos: Fujifilm X-E2 with XF lenses