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STUDY GUIDE - THE SISTERHOOD OF THE TRAVELING PANTS
All Moanday. Tearday. Wailsday. Thumpsday. Frightday. Shatterday. - James Joyce
The chapter opens with Lena who was languishing in bed. Effie burst in to raid her closet and explained how Andreas was a better kisser than any American boy. Then, Effie noticed that Lena was holding the drawing she had done of Kostos, and Effie immediately declared that Lena was in love with Kostos. Furthermore, she said that Lena was too much of a chicken to do anything about it. She sat down on Lenaís bed and told her softly that she had to be brave and tell Kostos how she felt or she would regret it the rest of her life. Lena asked her sister in agony, ďWhat if he doesnít like me back?Ē Effie took her sisterís hand and said, ďThatís what I mean about being brave?í
The scene shifts to Bailey. She was looking at Tibby when she woke up, and Bailey looked pleased. A nurse brought Baileyís breakfast tray and indicated to Bailey that she had known she was sleeping beside Bailey. Tibby apologized, but the nurse wasnít angry. Bailey then noticed that Tibby was wearing the Pants and Tibby explained that she wore them, because she needed help. She also told Bailey that Mimi had died. She began to cry big, sloppy tears while Bailey allowed one delicate tear to trail down her cheek. She said that she knew Tibby was there the night before, and it gave her good dreams. Bailey then told Tibby she had to go to work and insisted on it as long as she came back later.
So, Tibby left and found Carmen waiting in the lobby. Carmen told her she needed the Pants. So they exchanged jeans, and Carmen went home. On the morning of August 19th, she woke up early and dressed in the Pants. She took a bus to the airport where she picked up an expensive round-trip ticket purchased with her fatherís credit card. Then, she flew to Charleston and took a cab to the Episcopal Church. She sat anonymously in the back row and watched her father appear with Paul as his best man. She waited to feel anger about that, but it didnít happen. She knew her father was lucky. Then, when Lydia appeared, Carmen realized that it didnít matter if she was forty years old and wearing a silly dress, she was still beautiful, like all brides. When the four of them were carefully arranged around the alter, Carmen had a monetary pang that the family was arranged like that, but then she recognized that they had wanted her there, too. She felt transported by the music and the ceremony, but her fatherís face when he saw her made her come back into herself and want to stay there.
The scene shifts to Bridget. All her friends had been clucking around her, trying to make her feels better, so she finally went to dinner with them. After the meal, Eric came over to her and asked her to take a walk with him. They walked to a secluded spot on the beach and they talked about what had happened between them. Eric told her that he now realized that she hadnít had much experience with guys and that it was worst because she was a young sixteen. Thatís when she admitted that she was fifteen. Then, he told her, because they might not ever talk again, that she had taken his life by storm that summer and that she had been with him in his thought every day since they swam together. And yet, he said that she was just too young for him, but that maybe when she was twenty, he would see her again and heíd pray that she would still want him. He said that he just couldnít worship her the way she deserved. She could only cry, because his words werenít really what she needed. Her need was as big as the stars, but he was down on the beach far away.
Carmen, Tibby, Lena and Bee all must feel fear and shed tears as the truth of their situations smacks them in the face. Lena must be brave and face Kostos. Carmen must be brave enough to go to her fatherís wedding and by doing so, admit that she was wrong. Tibby must be brave enough to accept both Mimiís death and the inevitability of Bailey losing her fight for life. And Bee must be brave enough to accept that sheís far too young to be with Eric. These are all sobering passages in their lives that will be memories and pain for always.Table of Contents | Message Board | Downloadable/Printable Version