January 26, 2019
Suddenly, a group of men emerged from the darkness. They were refugees from one of the many tribal wars in the desert, and they have become bandits so they can survive. They found Santiago in the now-deep hole. The men found a piece of gold in Santiago's bag, given to him by a man who had changed his life, and they made him dig even more. Daylight came, and when no gold was found, they beat him. Santiago lay bleeding, his blood staining the sand that was already melting from the merciless sun. He had come so far, and his treasure was so near, he thought painfully, but the only thing he found was death.
And like many people who were about to die, he saw his life flash before him. All of this began with a dream, like all timeless quests. Many times he had awakened from a dream of a treasure in the Egyptian pyramids. Then he met a strange man who called himself The King of Salem, who told him: "When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.” All his life, Santiago has been a shepherd in a rural countryside in Spain, but in his heart, he had always yearned to travel, to see what lies beyond the world he knows. So he set out to cross the sea and to cross the desert.
Another mysterious man appeared in his life. He thought he would be killed when the man drew his sword, then he realized that they had been looking for each other – he had found the Alchemist. And so, on that fateful day in the pyramids, Santiago faced death once more. But the leader spared his life. He, too, had a dream, he told Santiago, but he said he was not a fool to cross the desert and to cross the sea just to follow it. They left Santiago alone, but he got the last piece he was looking for, something he couldn't have if he hadn't suffered. And that moment, he finally knew where he would find his treasure.
Photo courtesy of HarperCollins.com