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 Sinbad the sailor 
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     Sinbad the Sailor

During the times of Caliph Haroun-al-Raschid, there was a poor porter named Hindbad who lived in Baghdad, who was sent also on a very hot day to carry a heavy load from one city to the other. Before he had reached half the distance he was so worn-out that, finding himself in a quiet street where the lane was sprinkled with a rose water, and where always a cool breeze blows, he kept his heavy load upon the ground, and sat down to rest in the shade under a wide house.

Very soon he decided that he could not have chosen a pleasing place; from where a delicious perfume of aloes wood and pastilles came from the open windows and merge with the scent of the rose water which steamed up from the hot lane. Within the palace he heard some music, as if many of the instruments skillfully played, and the melodious chirpings of the nightingales and other birds, and by this, and the delicious smell of many tasty dishes of which he presently became aware, he judged that feasting and blissful making were going on.

He wondered who lived in this dazzling house which he had never seen in his life before, the street in which the house stood being one which he rarely had occasion to pass through it. To satisfy his interest he went up to some wonderfully dressed servants who stood at the door, and asked one of them the name of the master of the palace.

"What," one of the servant replied, "do you live in Baghdad, and do not know that here lives the grand man: 'Sinbad the Sailor', the famous traveler who had sailed over every sea upon which the sun shines?"

The porter, who had often heard people speaking of the huge wealth of Sinbad, could not help feeling jealous of one whose lot seemed to be as happy as his own was unhappy. Casting his hands and eyes up to the sky he prayed to God:     

''Think, Mighty Creator of all the things, the differences between Sinbad and my life. Every day I suffer a thousand distress and calamity, and have hard work to only get enough bad barley bread to keep myself and my family alive, while the lucky Sinbad spends money right and left and lives in this huge palace! What has he done that you should give him this pleasant life-and what have I done to deserve so hard-living lifeless life?"

So saying this he stamped his feet upon the ground like one beside himself with sadness and hopelessness. Just at this moment a servant came out of the palace, and taking him inside the palace said, "Come with me, My master-The Great Sinbad wants to speak to you."

Hindbad was little surprised at this command, and feared that his thoughtless words might have drawn upon him the annoyance of Sinbad, so he tried to excuse himself upon the cause that he could not leave the burden which had been given to him in the street. However the guard promised him that it should be taken care of, and plead him to obey the call so forcefully that at last the porter was gratified to go inside.

He followed the servant into a vast room, where a great company was seated round a table covered with all type of elegance.

In the place of honor, there sat a tall, grave man whose long white beard honored him. Behind his chair stood a crowd of ministers who were ever ready to assist him, this was the famous Sinbad himself. The porter, ever in life was alarmed at the sight of so much brilliance, saluted the noble company. Sinbad made a sign to him to appear near him, caused him to be seated at his right hand, and himself gave morsels upon his plate, and poured out a draught of excellent wine for him, and presently, when the dinner drew to a close, spoke to him familiarly, asking his name and occupation.

"My lord," replied the porter, "I am known as Hindbad-the porter."

"I am glad to see you here," continued Sinbad. "And I will answer for the rest of the company that they are equally pleased, but I wish you to tell me what it was that you said in the street." For Sinbad, when passing by the open window before the feast was about to began, had heard his complaint and therefore had sent his servants to call him.

At this question Hindbad was full with confusion, and bending down his head, replied, "My lord, I confess that, due to the overcome by weariness and ill-humor, I uttered thoughtless words, which I pray you to punish me."

"Oh!" replied Sinbad, "do not imagine that I am so unfair as to blame you. In the words that I heard in your compliant, I understand your situation and can have pity you. Only you  have misunderstanding about me, and I wish to set you right. You doubtless imagine that I have acquired all the wealth and luxury that you see me enjoy without difficulty or danger, but this is far indeed from being the case. I have only reached this happy state after having for years suffered every possible kind of hard works and danger."

"Yes, my friends," he continued, addressing the company, "l assure you that my adventures have been strange enough to repel even the most greedy men from seeking wealth by passing the seas. Since you have, perhaps, heard but confused accounts of my seven voyages, and the dangers and wonders that I have met with by sea and land, I will now give you a full and true account of them, which I think you will be well pleased to hear."

As Sinbad was introducing his adventures of seven voyages chiefly on account of the porter, he ordered, before beginning his tale, that the burden which had been left in the street by Hindbad should be carried by some of his own servants to the place for which Hindbad had set out at first, while he remained to listen to the story.




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