What did the old man consider strange about himself?
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"I am a strange old man."Santiago, Page 14
Santiago says this to Manolin after they finish up a day of fishing on separate boats. It is meant as an explanation for how his eyes remain so good after going turtle-ing for so many years (apparently, turtle-ing damages the eyes). But it also identifies Santiago as unique, foreshadowing the uncanny strength of will and body he will demonstrate in the days that follow as he wrestles the marlin. He is also "strange" in that, unlike most other fishermen, he feels like the creatures of the sea are his brothers.