Sunday, November 27, 2011

10 Significant Events

1. Very early in the book Jeannette gets caught on fire from cooking hot dogs at the age of three. She gets really bad burns and is rushed to the hospital. Normally, not child at the age of three would be cooking hot dogs over a hot stove with boiling water by themselves. Jeannette however did this on a regular basis. The Walls children were taught how to do things, like making their own food, at a very young age.

2. While the Walls family lived in California, Jeannette was in first grade. On her way home from school she got jumped by four Mexican girls that beat her up pretty badly. When her dad had asked her what happened she lied and she there were six girls. She said she fought back really well, even though that was not the case. She wanted her dad to think she was tough and take care of herself. The next day Brain helped Jeannette fend them off. The kids often had to take care of themselves, but still wanted their parents to be proud of them.

3. On page 66 Rex teaches Jeannette how to swim. He would throw her into the water and let her struggle to stay above the water, and once she was going down he would pick her up, let her catch her breath, and throw her right back in until she got the hang of it. She was furious at her parents for doing that to her and watching her struggle. However her dad said to her, "you can't cling to the side your whole life, that one lesson every parent needs to teach a child is "If you don't want to sink, you better figure out how to swim." What other reason, he asked, would possibly make him do this?" Jeannette realized he was right.

4. Rose Mary and Rex got into a really huge fight about they barley have enough money to keep any sort of food in the house. The fight continued into the morning after the day it started. Rose Mary went as far as dangling her body off the second floor while Rex had her arms trying to pull her back in. She was screaming that he was trying to kill her, but once he pulled her back in he protested that he did not push her and she had jumped. Soon after,the fight was over. Whenever Rex and Rose Mary got into a fight, it always cleared up and went back to normal.

5. Rex Walls always had something out of the ordinary up his sleeve. One day he decided to take his kids to the zoo in Phoenix, where they were living at the time. When they came to the cheetah exhibit, Rex crossed the chainlinked fence and put his hand up to the exhibit fence. The cheetah let him pet it. Jeannette asked him if she could try, so he took her hand and put it up to the cheetah. The cheetah even licked her hand. Someone got a guard and they were kicked out of the zoo, but Jeannette didn't care. She had gotten her hand licked by a cheetah.

6. On Jeannettes 10th birthday, her dad asked her what she wanted. He told her that he would do anything for her or die trying. She nervously asked him if he could stop drinking. He tried his hardest. He had to be locked in his bedroom for days without any interaction with anyone. He spent that whole summer without drinking and even into the fall. However on a road trip to the Grand Canyon, their car broke down and they had to get a ride back to Phoenix. When they got back Rex disappeared for three days, and came home drunk. Jeannette couldn't believe that after all he went through to stop, he started right back up again.

7. Right before Jeannettes senior year, she decided that she was going to move to New York City where her older sister Lori was. Her dad was trying to persuade her not to go. He brought up the glass castle and how he swore he would build it. He told her it would be better than any apartment she could find in New York. When Jeannette told him she was catching the next bus out of Welch, he walked silently out of the room. Rex had the idea and blueprints of the glass castle ever since Jeannette was an infant. He thought the idea of the glass castle could keep her around forever.

8. Jeannette had been in New York for a while now. She had married a man named Eric and four years later her moms brother passed away. Jeannettes mom told her that they had to buy his land to keep in in the family. She told Jeannette that that was one thing he father taught her, to never sell your land. Jeannette asked her mom how much she would need and when she told her a million dollars, Jeanette was in shock. Jeannette's mom had the same amount of land as her brother did, so when she started to put it all together she realized that her mom had land worth a million dollars. She realized that all that time they went without heat in the winter and went without food for days, they could have had it.

9. Jeannettes dad had a heart attack at the age of 59. The only thing keeping him alive in the hospital was the machines. Jeannette knew that her dad wouldn't want to be going out this way. She wanted to scoop him up and run out with him, just like he had when she was in the hospital, but she didn't. The machines were turned off an hour later. A year after her dad passed away she divorced her husband and bought an apartment of her own. I think after her dad passed away she realized that she wanted something more in life and had to be on her own to get it.

10. In the last section of the book Jeannette and her husband, John Taylor, have Thanksgiving at their home with Jeannettes mother,Lori,Brian, and John's two daughters. Jeannette told John's daughter Veronica that Grandma Walls was different from her other grandma. John's daughter Jessica told Jeannette that her mom laughs the same way Jeannette does and I think that meant a lot to Jeannette. No matter how different her mom was from her, they both did something the same.

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