Santiago and the Crystal Merchant

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  • Topic: Tell, Chance, Glass
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  • Published : December 30, 2005
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Santiago and The Crystal Merchant

Sometimes changes are required to make life easier when you are struggling. In the novel, The Alchemist, Santiago suggests that the crystal merchant should change in order to improve his business. When the merchant agrees with Santiago's brilliant ideas, many positive things start to happen.

In this part of the novel, Santiago had just gotten robbed and he has no way to survive. Desperate for food, he offers his assistance to a crystal merchant in exchange for food. The crystal merchant hesitantly accepts and sees that the boy is a good luck charm because he attracts customers to the shop. Because Santiago had just gotten robbed, he finds this place to work at, and it helps him solves his financial problems, so it fits perfectly into the storyline.

After working for a while in the crystal merchant's shop, Santiago requests a change in the shop by telling the merchant there should be a display case at the bottom of the hill to attract customers. However, the merchant replies, "‘People will pass by and bump into it, and pieces will be broken,'" (Pg. 52) showing that he is reticent to change, but because of Santiago's attraction of customers, the merchant lets Santiago have his way. The narrative tells that the "shelf brought many customers into the crystal shop." (Pg. 56) From this examination, we can tell that change can be a beneficial thing. Santiago also mentions that the crystal merchant should sell tea in his crystal glasses. Again the merchant shows that he is unwilling to do it. "Lot of places sell tea around here," (Pg. 57) the merchant argues back. Then again, the merchant lets Santiago have his way and sells tea along with his crystal glasses. Again, this new change brings many customers, which results in the merchant's affluence. The book mentions, "Not everyone can see his dreams come true in the same way." (Pg. 56) I found this quote interesting because it tells us that dreams can come true, but...
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