His inner thoughts
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There are quite a lot but I'll try to summarize. While at sea Santiago remembers his past with nostalgic reverence. Then he laments about himself in the present; he is old, arthritic and alone. Still the Old Man says, "A man can be destroyed but not defeated." Santiago is out to prove himself, prove that the shell of a man still has hints of his former glory.Although old, tired and the joke of younger fishermen, Santiago draws strength from his heroes. He thinks of the great Joe DiMaggio who played baseball despite the excruciating pain of a bone spur. He remembers fondly beating a big man at arm wrestling and earning the title of El Champion. The Old Man dreams of lions on the beach, a symbol of youth and raw natural strength. SAntiago hopes there is enough vitality in him, enough of his former glory to help him catch one last great fish.