Oumar's Journey

Improved Essays
Resting on the edge of the Niger River in the usual searing heat of Timbuktu, Fatima, daughter of a village trader Oumar and his wife Awa, quietly ponders about her father and his current pilgrimage to Mecca alongside Musa Keita I and 72,000 other men. Oumar was individually selected by the Mansa himself for this journey, and as important as the pilgrimage is, Fatima cannot help but to feel perturbed by her father’s absence. Awa and Fatima have uniformly quarreled with each other for the past two since Awa discovered Fatima’s love affair with a local farmer by the name of Kader. Oumar, being of a more accepting and forgiving nature, pardoned Fatima of her sin.
Approaching Fatima from the other side of the river was Fatima’s younger brother,
…show more content…
The merchant patiently waited overnight for the two to arrive. Fatima wanted the exchange as swift and non-time consuming as possible, so that she could hurry to Kader to begin their journey. Upon arrival to the merchant’s shop the merchant appeared more gaunt and demented than when last encountered. “I have the five bars of copper. Are the camels ready to go?” The merchant stood in silence without removing his cold, lifeless gaze. Fatima began to repeat herself, only to be interrupted by the merchant. “Your pilgrimage will meet devastation. Do not trust one that you do not fully know. Though trust the birds and only the birds.” An ominous feeling fell onto Amar and Fatima. After his statement, the merchant mechanically walked behind his stop, and brought out the three healthy camels. Fatima hastily gave the copper to the merchant without a word, and continued to lead two camels by rope while Amar led one. After a few minutes of walking, Amar broke the silence. “What do you think the merchant meant by what he said?” “He’s probably just trying to frighten us out of going on the pilgrimage. He isn’t a holy man; he murdered his wife after all. You have no reason to be concerned. I will protect you like the older sibling that I am.” Despite displaying this adamant reassurance, she felt somewhat unnerved by the merchant’s demeanor and warning; however, she put it all in the back of her

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