"sister," begins the story telling of how she had a fine relationship with her family: Mama, Papa-Daddy (her maternal grandfather) and Uncle Rondo. That is, until her younger sister returned home anyway. Stella-Rondo had recently separated from her husband – a man who, Sister points out, used to go with her until Stella-Rondo "stole" him. Stella-Rondo is the baby of the family by exactly twelve months and Sister says that is why she is so spoiled.
Sister is upset that Stella-Rondo always gets everything she wants and she just throws it away. This explains why, soon after getting married to Mr. Whitaker, she separates from him and comes home with a two-year old child, Shirley-T. Mama "pretends" to be upset with Stella-Rondo for not telling her about the baby, but Stella-Rondo claims that the baby is adopted.
The events of "Why I Live at the P.O." are set in motion when Stella-Rondo, the narrator's sister, returns to the family home in China Grove, Mississippi. The narrator, known as Sister, claims that up to this point she has gotten along well with her mother, uncle and grandfather. Sister has a competitive and contentious relationship with Stella-Rondo, and her return sets off a chain of petty family arguments that serve to explain why Sister has moved out and now lives at the local post office.
It is the Fourth of July. Stella Rondo has left her husband, Mr. Whitaker, a man Sister had once dated, and brings home a daughter, a two-year-old child named Shirley T. The family did not know of Shirley T.'s existence and her age suggests that she was conceived before the marriage took place. Stella-Rondo explains that Shirley T. is adopted, which everyone accepts...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document