Children are excellent at learning about their parents. Sometimes though, us children do not learn things about our parents until we see how our parents behave around different groups of people. In this story, the narrator is dragged to dreary dancing lessons at a salon in France. It is there that the child sees his mother in a new light. Rather than being reserved as her usual self, she was at ease, and confident. These are things that he had not seen in his mom very often. What little facets of personality in our parents do we not know about?
This story is almost two short stories in one. The narrator basically gives two different examples of events that happened in his mother’s life. They would appear to be rather mundane to most anyone, but not to her son. It actually took me some time of reflection to see how these two events are related, and after some time I was able to make a general connection. It makes me wonder what things I didn’t know about my own mother as well. As such, I recommend this story, and I want to read more from Mr. Gide. You can find this work in Great Short Stories of the Masters.
Content Advisory: None