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The day of the bridge party is the first anniversary of the death of Aziz's wife. He spends time thinking about her. He had not loved her before the marriage, but afterwards, he had actually fallen in love with her. She had died soon after their marriage, and her loss can never be compensated; there is no place for another woman in Aziz's life, ever again.
Even though Aziz completes work in time to make it to the party, he refuses to go. Instead, he borrows a polo pony and plays with some local soldiers. Later, Aziz sees a friend and lies about not being able to go to the party. After he goes home, he finds an invitation for tea at Fielding's house. Aziz is delighted and looks forward to the visit. He finds Fielding a truly courteous person and a "splendid fellow." Aziz thinks he could become friends with this British man.
The purpose of this chapter is to further develop the character of Aziz. He is a doting father, a sorrowful widow, a very good doctor, a determined man, and a fine human being. As a widow, he is devoted to the memory of his beloved wife and refuses to think about every remarrying. As a surgeon, he is far superior to his English counterpart, who resents him. Aziz also tries to be fair- minded. He plays polo with the lower caste Indians and enjoys their company during the game. He also judges Fielding, an Englishman, fairly and even thinks he could become friends with him. His refusal to go to the bridge party is based on his reasonable assumption that no good will come from it; he comfortably uses his work as an excuse not to attend.