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MonkeyNotes-Main Street by Sinclair Lewis
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Chapter 15

Summary

Carol feels proud of her husband. She watches with pride as her husband is woken up in the middle of the night to attend upon a German farmerís wife. Kennicott goes to do his duty unmindful of his hunger and the cold. He does not wake up Carol. Though she is awake, she is reluctant to break the spell by getting up. So she watches her husband as he gets ready to leave. When he returns, he informs her that it was a case of appendicitis, and that he operated upon the patient and falls asleep immediately.

Nelson with an injured leg comes for a check up. Kennicott examines the wound and finds it healing neatly. Mrs. Nelson wants to know how much they owe him but adds that they can not pay immediately. Kennicott tells her not to worry about the money. He tells Carol to give them breakfast because they have a long drive ahead. One day Kennicott leaves home in the morning and does not return even after half past six. Their suppertime is six but Carol waits for Kennicott worriedly. Kennicott returns and Carol tells Bea to serve dinner.

Carol wants to surprise her husband and takes coffee and snacks to Kennicottís office. Kennicottís office contains only few things besides the medical equipment. It looks quite barren. The patients sit stiff and quiet. She finds Kennicott busy with his patients and decides to wait for him to be free, as she looks around the plain room she blames herself for having neglected his office. Kennicott fells delighted when he finds that she has brought coffee and cookies and tells Carol that he was never so surprised in all his life. Carol informs him that she would change the furniture in his office. Kennicott protests, but when Carol makes the waiting room comfortable with wicker chairs and paintings on the walls and a rug, Kennicott admits that the room looked a lot better.


Carol gives a reception for the Thanatopsis club. She tries to be friendly with Lymn Cass as well as with Bjornstam and Guy Pollock. She even calls on Mrs. Bogart as Kennicott had once suggested. She finds Bogartís house well scrubbed. Though Carol prefers to sit in the kitchen Mrs. Bogart lights the parlor stove and makes Carol sit there comfortably. She complains about the people who complain against her son Cy Bogart. She gossips about the girl waiter, about Harry Haydock who is supposed to have an affair with a girl in Minneapolis, about how Juanita had affairs before marriage, about Ole Jenson, about Bjornstam, even about Nat Hick the tailor. She even warns Carol about Bea and the grocery boy. She grumbles that no one listens to her and proclaims that she would set things right if she were given the powers. She would never let any boy or girl know anything about life till they got married. She believes that only prayers would save them from becoming sinners. She would force them to attend Sunday school and put an end to dances. Carol manages to escape from her only after another half an hour.

Kennicott takes Carol along to attend Nel Endstrom who is down with jaundice. They take a carriage. Kennicott had shown Carol a snapshot of Nel Endstromís baby and his log cabin when he was courting Carol. It gets colder but Carol feels very happy. When they reach the house, Carol recognizes the log cabin. But the Endstroms have prospered and built a house. The log cabin is used as a barn. The house contains all the symbols of prosperity. Carol settles down in the kitchen and finds the baby of the photograph has grown up to be a shy four year old boy. Even as she tries to talk to him Kennicott is summoned by Dave Dyer to attend on Adolph who lives ten miles away. He has a crushed arm that has to be amputated. The doctor gives instructions for medicines and tells him that Carol would give the anesthesia. Then he finds the boy and compliments him on his healthy looks. He tells him that he would grow up to be bigger than his father is. The boy squirms with delight and Carol feels that she could never get a child to laugh so and she feels very humbled.

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