• Madison White

A Story a Day #53: Machado De Assis

April 12th, 2020

"Admiral's Night"

Machado De Assis

A sailor returns home to see a girl who he pledged himself to before leaving ten months ago. When he comes back, he learns that she has gone off with some textile peddler. He goes to see her and she is friendly. He gives her the earrings he bought for her and tells her stories of the sea. They talk all night and she shows off the earrings to her friend. In the morning, he leaves and returns to his ship where the others congratulate him on his "admiral's night."

I liked the simplicity of this story and how a dramatic situation turned out to not be that dramatic. The people in it have their faults and are not villified for it. They talk about their issues in a mostly free and frank manner and continue on congenially, for the most part. In my life, at least, this is usually how things go. Rarely are there big explosions of anger and rage, but rather, some awkward moments that eventually pass. I appreciated the calmness and realism of this story.

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