It’s a dark and stormy night, Margaret Murry tosses and turns in her attic bedroom. She is not able to fall asleep because she is engrossed in thoughts with all that seems wrong in her life: she feels like she doesn’t belong at school: her high school teachers have just threatened to drop her down a grade because of her poor academic performance: and to make matters worse, her father has been missing for several years and they have not heard from him ever since. Meg hears their family’s dog Fortinbras barking downstairs and she begins to worry that an intruder may be trespassing around the house. She suspects the tramp she heard about when she had gone to the post office to pick up mails who according to the gossiper stole twelve bedsheets from the constable’s wife Mrs. Buncombe.
Discharging her fears as silly and trying to calm her nerves down. Meg decides to go downstairs to the kitchen to make herself some cocoa. She is amazed to find her five-year-old brother Charles Wallace waiting for her at the kitchen table, although she is aware that Charles always seems capable of reading her mind. Their mother Mrs. Murry soon joins them and tells Meg about the phone call she received from Mrs. Henderson; the mother of the boy Meg had a fight with at school that day. Meg complains to her mother that she hates being an “oddball” at school. She wishes she was more ordinary than her young twin brothers, Sandy and Dennys. Mrs. Murry tells Meg that she has to learn the meaning of moderation, and the importance of finding a “happy medium”. Charles then comments by saying that he had spoken to his friend Mrs. Whatsit about Meg’s problems, though he refuses to explain who the woman is.
Meanwhile, as Charles is preparing sandwiches for his mother and Meg, their dog begins to bark loudly again. Mrs. Murry goes outside to find out what is causing the uproar. She returns with Charles Wallace’s enigmatic friend Mrs. Whatsit. An odd tramp completely wrapped up in wet clothes. Mrs. Whatsit explains that she splendors in nights of such fierce weather, however, tonight she has been blown off course in the storm. Why did you steal the bedsheets from Mrs. Buncombe, Charles asks confirming Meg’s suspicion that it is Mrs. Whatsit the neighborhood tramp? After removing her boots and drying her feet, she suddenly remarks about the existence of a “tesseract” and then hurries out the door. Mrs. Murry stood still at the threshold astonished by Mrs. Whatsit’s parting words.
My Own Reaction.
In this chapter, Meg is introduced as an ordinary adolescent, with problems like those faced by most teenagers nowadays. Meg is trying so hard to fit in and to feel more confident in her own identity; she feels like an outsider at school because she doesn’t get along with other students who constantly accuse her of acting childish. Part of her estrangement results from the disrepute of her unusual family: her teachers expect her performance in class to be better, since both her parents are brilliant scientists, and the boys at school make fun of her “dumb baby brother” Charles Wallace who began speaking at a later age. Lastly, all the people in her town gossip about her non-existing dad. Suggesting that the whole family should just accept the fact that he left them. On top of that Meg feels insecure about her looks when compared to her gorgeous mum. She describes herself as ‘repulsive-looking’ and wonders whether her social disaffection is related to the physical unattractiveness she believes she possesses. Therefore, Meg stands out for the very same reason that makes her so typical of most teenagers: Awkward and insecure; she lacks confidence in her own abilities.
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A Wrinkle in Time’: Reader’s Reflection.
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