Set in a very hot summer day, Manuel Arguilla’s Midsummer is a story with a very short and simple plot. It is basically a story of a man meeting a very beautiful Filipina woman by the well in a sizzling summer day. It starts off with the man and his cart tied to his bull on a long dry road when he suddenly sees a woman who stood unmoving watching the man come towards her. The woman was described from head to toe with such detail as the man looked from a distance. The man followed the woman to the where she went and led him to the well under a big mango tree. He watched her as she filled the jar and placed it on top of her head. The woman leaves and the man goes to the well and gathers water for his bull and himself while still thinking of the woman. The man then eats his dinner under the shade of the tree when the woman comes back to refill her jar. As she fills her jar the man invites the woman referring to her as Ading, to eat with her. The woman then addresses the man as Manong and thankfully refuses his invitation to eat as she herself just ate. They converse and suddenly the woman spills water all over the food and apologizes by getting him water but the Manong insists that he fetch it from the well. Ading notices Manong’s well built muscles and body as he fetches water, showing her how strong he is. He drinks his water as Ading lifts the bucket for him. The story ends with Ading inviting her to their home and Manong follows her with his cart and bull.
The setting of the story was just appropriate showing the intense sexual heat and tension between the man and the woman. It was evident that these two had some attraction towards each other and had an appreciation for each other’s physical traits. Arguilla had made the story so detailed I felt that each description instantly painted a picture for me in my mind and I did not have to imagine much. He described the setting of the sizzling heat through the sensory details available to him. The plot was simple...
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