I began to read The Old Man and the Sea recently. I'm reading a paperback but for the question I'm using the link to Gutenberg.
Soon after I started to read the book, I found I did not understand what the "him" and "He" refer to in the following dialog in which the old man and the boy were chatting about the plan for the next day:
"Tomorrow is going to be a good day with this current," he said.
"Where are you going?" the boy asked.
"Far out to come in when the wind shifts. I want to be out before it is light."
"I'll try to get him to work far out," the boy said. "Then if you hook something truly big we can come to your aid."
I re-read from the beginning a few times but still couldn't figure out who or what the "he/him" refers to.
Earlier in the conversation, Santiago, the old man, said to the boy, "I can still row and Rogelio will throw the net." Google shows "Rogelio" is a male name so I think the "he/him" here may refer to Rogelio. At the beginning, I thought this makes some sense because the boy said "...if you hook something truly big we can come to your aid." In my imagination, the boy was suggesting the following:
- In the next day, the boy would go finishing with Santiago the old man and Rogelio. The three people would be on the same boat.
- Santiago must be responsible for something that I haven't learned about by reading so far, but Rogelio would throw the net as the old man said.
- If a really big fish would be caught, the boy and Rogelio would help the old man to deal with it. The "we" here refers to the boy and Rogelio.
- When this conversation was happening, the boy had been required to work on another luckier boat, so, usually, the boy would not be able to work on the same boat as the old man. However, when the boy suggested fishing together the next day, the old man said "No. Go and play baseball." So I'm guessing the "next day" was a rest day for the fishermen and the boy would be able to do some recreational activities such as playing baseball. In other words, the boy would be free to do anything. This is why he was able to offer to go fishing together.
So far so good, until I went on reading and saw the later part of the conversation:
"He does not like to work too far out."
"No," the boy said. "But I will see something that he cannot see such as a bird working and get him to come out after dolphin."
"Are his eyes that bad?"
"He is almost blind."
"It is strange," the old man said. "He never went turtle-ing. That is what kills the eyes."
The old man asked "Are his eyes that bad?" It sounds like the old man didn't really know much about Rogelio, but if the old man and Rogelio had been working together, the old man should kind of know him. Besides, if "him" refers to Rogelio, what does it mean by "get him to come out after dolphin"? Get Rogelio to come out after dolphin?
Anyway, I'm confused by this "he/him". Appreciate if anyone could help me clarify.