Jhumpa Lahiri's Interpreter of Maladies: Summary of This Blessed House

Topics: Love, Marriage, House Pages: 4 (1530 words) Published: October 23, 2012
When moving into a new house, newlyweds Twinkle and Sanjeev find Christian icons everywhere. The first is a porcelain effigy of Jesus found next to a bottle of malt vinegar left in the kitchen by the previous owners. Sanjeev tells his wife to throw both away, reminding her that they are not Christian. He feels that he has had to remind Twinkle of the obvious several times when moving in. But Twinkle is attached to the figurine and places it on the mantle – which Sanjeev notices needs dusting. Over the course of the week, Twinkle finds more items and places each on the mantle. Sanjeev doesn’t understand why his wife is so charmed by the snow globes, statuettes and 3D postcards. By the end of the week, Twinkle grows dismayed that no other objects are hiding about. Then she finds a tacky poster of a crying Jesus and, with delight, announces she will hang it up. Sanjeev, unpacking while listening to Mahler, puts his foot down. Twinkle pushes back and decides to hang the poster in her study behind the door so it will remain hidden during their housewarming party. Sanjeev sighs and thinks about the piece he is listening to – a testament to love. From the bathrrom, Twinkle tells him she finds the music boring. They bicker about the mantle on their way to Manhattan for a night, Twinkle in high heels and now taller than Sanjeev. He doesn’t understand why she is content and curious about everything. He doesn’t understand why she doesn’t unpack or clean or dust as she is home all day working on a dissertation. Three days later, he comes home to a delicious fish stew concocted out of thin air and with the vinegar Sanjeev implored Twinkle to throw away. The bread basket is covered with a cloth bearing Christ’s image. Twinkle calms him by saying that the house is blessed. Sanjeev marvels at her behavior. Nicknamed after a nursery rhyme, she has yet to lose her childlike endearment. They had only known each other for four months. Their parents, old friends, arranged a...
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