Chapter 31


I started becoming nervous and I wanted to go to that part of the sea where the strong current was. I set out to reach that part of the island one day. On the way there, I thought to myself how stupid I would probably look to an Englishman. I had a big hat, a short jacket and knee-length trousers all made out of goatskin. I didn’t have socks or shoes but I put some goat skins around my feet. I had two belts – one for the sword and knife, and one for the gunpowder. I was also carrying a basket on my back, a gun on my shoulder and an umbrella made out of goatskin above my head. My beard was pretty long. I realised that I looked very different from what I used to look like years ago.

One day, about lunchtime, I was walking on the beach. I was going to check my boat when I came across something surprising. I saw the mark of a human footprint on the sand. I looked around but I couldn’t see anyone. I was terrified! I ran back to my house and closed the door. I was so scared that I couldn’t sleep that night. Why was there no boat? I was really scared and I started thinking that maybe I just imagined it all. Later, I decided that it must be the footprint of one of the primitives who probably lived on the islands around. I began to worry. What if they knew about my boat? What if they attacked me?

Maybe, it was the mark of my own foot and I was foolish to get scared. This made me feel better and I left my fortification after three days of hiding. I milked the goats and went to see the footprint again. When I approached, I saw that the footprint was much bigger than the size of my foot. It was impossible that the footprint was mine.

I got scared again. I thought about letting all my animals into the wild, destroying my crops and my summer house that night. All to hide my presence on the island. I was so afraid that I couldn’t fall asleep the whole night. I finally slept a little in the morning, and my head was clear when I woke up. Now, it didn’t seem so strange that there should be people on the islands around. Perhaps they came to the shore of my island from time to time. Or the wind carried them this way for the first time. I remembered that I had never seen anyone on the island. Not even a sign. This calmed me down.