“‘It’s come to a pretty pass, I must say,’ she declared to the world at large, ‘when a lady has to start life afresh in a strange land, without so much of a word of warning or a crumb of cheese‘” (Langley, 73).
The sixth chapter was a lot of fun and introduced two new characters.
But first I learned that Abu Ali definitely doesn’t do things in halves. When he runs into a Green Dragon who wants to eat his donkey, he sends the donkey away so the Dragon can’t eat him. It’s like take that dragon. Wow.
This gets him into trouble with the Dragon, so he rubs the lamp. I was concerned when the lamp didn’t work, but then, when it does… Interesting. Boomlakka Wee, Abdul’s son, appears. Hello. I wasn’t expecting that.
Although it does make me wonder how the Lamp works.
Earlier I talked about how there was only Abdul in the lamp and based on the translations I’ve read, there should more than one jinn. Since Boomlakka Wee was able to come in place of his father, does that mean more than one jinn can access the lamp? Or more specifically, can more than one come out of the lamp? So are there many slaves of the lamp?
Unless it has more to do with Boomlakka Wee being Abdul’s son… Maybe Abdul is the central jinn of the lamp and, for some reason, Boomlakka Wee answered Abu Ali’s rub. Like it’s a family telephone.
But more importantly: Why wasn’t Abdul available? And does this count as Abu Ali’s single rub?
I’m also curious about how the Lamp can still be used even if Abdul is free? I ask this in lieu of the Aladdin TV Series where Genie still lives in the lamp and Aladdin can still summon him sometimes even though he’s obviously not a slave of the lamp, nor is he bound to it.
For example, in “Some Enchanted Genie”, his lamp is stolen by Abis Mal, but Genie tells Aladdin that “I may not be a slave of the lamp anymore, but that lamp’s my home.” Even though he has no tie to his lamp, he’s sentimentality attached to it.
And in “Never Say Nefir” while Genie is away being tricked by some money-hungry imps, Aladdin rubs his lamp, expecting help from his friend. This indicates that Aladdin can still call Genie from inside the lamp. So despite being free, Genie still lives in his lamp and Aladdin can still summon him, but without any stipulation on the number of wishes.
Is this similar to what’s going on with Abdul?
Obviously, this story seems based on the idea that neither Abdul or Boomlakka Wee live in the lamp physically. Instead, the lamp seems to serve as a knock on the door. (Although Genie does say that when anyone rubs his lamp it’s like someone “like ringing my doorbell!“. Except the lamp is his house, too.) But the situation of a jinn who is free and can still be called through his lamp is similar.
So what does that imply about freedom and jinn and lamps? Especially lamps Aladdin’s got whose jinn he’s freed?
It posits the bizarre situation that even freed jinn are incapable of not offering wishes and service; it’s like it’s too much a part of their nature for them not to assist others. Which isn’t actually true. But it’s the most common motif in Western narratives.
In Abdul’s case, there seems to be an understanding that Aladdin isn’t supposed to rub the lamp, whereas in the Aladdin TV Series, Genie is more than happy to help Aladdin whenever he needs it.
Of course some of this is making me wonder if Abdul really is free. At least in the same way Disney’s interpretation had Aladdin free Genie.
But then – OMG! Boomlakka Wee messes up getting Abu Ali’s donkey back. Instead, he transports a mouse. And she’s perfect. So much snark, but so refined. I love her.
These cast of characters. Wow. So unique. I really love a lot of them. Especially Silver Bud and the Mouse.
- penulticarnivorous: adj. an ultimate carnivore???
- beadle: sexton
- truculence: 1. 3.
- asperity: n. 3.
“They rode straight into the Forest, and soon the donkey was trotting through wooded glades where branches knotted their knuckles together over their heads” (61).
Langley, Noel. The Land of Green Ginger. Jeffrey, NH: David R. Godine Publisher, 1975. Print.
“Never Say Nefir.” Aladdin (TV Series). ABC. Disney Channel, 24 April 1994. Television.
“Some Enchanted Genie.” Aladdin (TV Series). ABC. Disney Channel, 19 Sept. 1994. Syndicated Television.