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Rachel-K
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Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

Hi all,

 

Please use any of the following questions to start discussions for chapters 11 - 16, or feel free to post your own throughts and questions for the group!

 

In these chapters, we come to see Mary and Cobb create an ordinary life for themselves. Up to this point, we have known them only outside the context of "ordinary" life. Is this life any more "normal" than life on the Allagash or in Indonesia? Do these chapters change the feeling of Cobb and Mary's love being set outside of everyday life?

 

What does the home that Cobb and Mary find say about them?

 

How is their wedding day different and similar to the mock wedding the Chungamunga girls created for them? What does the gum tree represent for Mary?

 

Have you seen All That Heaven Allows? What is it about the film that appeals so strongly to Mary? What is it about the window that the couple share their first kiss in front of? What does the new window do for their home?

 

How do Cobb's and Mary's families and friends take part in these chapters that they haven't before?

 

Did you feel prepared to begin seeing Mary's symptoms in these chapters? Are Cobb and Mary prepared?


 

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BookJunkieOK
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

In these chapters, we come to see Mary and Cobb create an ordinary life for themselves. Up to this point, we have known them only outside the context of "ordinary" life. Is this life any more "normal" than life on the Allagash or in Indonesia? Do these chapters change the feeling of Cobb and Mary's love being set outside of everyday life?

 

I thought that even though it was a "normal" life at this point, there were ways they made it special, such as by sleeping outside at night.  I really liked seeing them in a "normal" setting.

 

What does the home that Cobb and Mary find say about them?

 

While it was charming and cozy, they found a way to make it special with the decided addition of the window.  I think it says that they find ways to make their lives special in the midst of the mundane.

 

How is their wedding day different and similar to the mock wedding the Chungamunga girls created for them? What does the gum tree represent for Mary?

 

This wedding was very similar to the mock one, and I love that the same words were used.  The gum tree represented longevity if I remember correctly.  It was beautiful.

 

Have you seen All That Heaven Allows? What is it about the film that appeals so strongly to Mary? What is it about the window that the couple share their first kiss in front of? What does the new window do for their home?

 

I think it appeals because the couple in the film defy the odds and choose each other, much as Mary probably felt she was defying the odds by falling in love when she thought she would never do so. 

 

How do Cobb's and Mary's families and friends take part in these chapters that they haven't before?

 

I like seeing them more and having them visit Mary and Cobb's house.  The antiquing trip was wonderful.  It really showed Cobb and Mary in the context of their new blended family rather than them wrapped up as a duo.

 

Did you feel prepared to begin seeing Mary's symptoms in these chapters? Are Cobb and Mary prepared?

 

I really wasn't.  I found myself taking it very hard (even knowing that she was positive) when the symptoms began.

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eadieburke
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves


Rachel-K wrote:

Hi all,

 

Please use any of the following questions to start discussions for chapters 11 - 16, or feel free to post your own throughts and questions for the group!

 

In these chapters, we come to see Mary and Cobb create an ordinary life for themselves. Up to this point, we have known them only outside the context of "ordinary" life. Is this life any more "normal" than life on the Allagash or in Indonesia? Do these chapters change the feeling of Cobb and Mary's love being set outside of everyday life?

 

Mary and Cobb's love in these chapters is still strong and continues to grow even as they settle into an "ordinary" life. It confirms the fact that they are truly "soul mates" even outside the life on the Allagash or in Indonesia.

 

What does the home that Cobb and Mary find say about them?

 

The home that they find confirms the fact that they truly love the outdoors!

 

How is their wedding day different and similar to the mock wedding the Chungamunga girls created for them? What does the gum tree represent for Mary?

 

Their wedding day is similar to the mock wedding but different in the fact that Mary and Cobb now have many friends and family members present. The gum tree represents "contentment" for Mary.

 

 

Have you seen All That Heaven Allows? What is it about the film that appeals so strongly to Mary? What is it about the window that the couple share their first kiss in front of? What does the new window do for their home?

 

I just rented the movie this weekend. I think Rock Hudson's character is very similar to Cobb's personality. He also loves the outdoors and teaches Jane Wyman's character not  to worry about what other people think and go with what's in your heart. The window is so large that It seems to bring the outside in while you are standing in front of it. If you haven't seen the movie, you should, because it really gives you more of a feeling of what Mary and Cobb's relationship is all about.

 

How do Cobb's and Mary's families and friends take part in these chapters that they haven't before?

 

These chapters show you how their family and friends love them both and want to do everything to make Mary's last days very special for Mary and Cobb.

 

Did you feel prepared to begin seeing Mary's symptoms in these chapters? Are Cobb and Mary prepared?

 

As the end of the book approaches and you already know the end is near for Mary, you start to get prepared for the inevitable. Although, Cobb and Mary are prepared, it is difficult for them both to let go. Mary is firm in her decision and Cobb's love for her allows him to follow Mary's wishes. The ending is very sad and Joe does a great job in allowing the reader to feel everything that Cobb is feeling. 


 


 

Eadie - A day out-of-doors, someone I loved to talk with, a good book and some simple food and music -- that would be rest. - Eleanor Roosevelt
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nymazz
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

 

In these chapters, we come to see Mary and Cobb create an ordinary life for themselves. Up to this point, we have known them only outside the context of "ordinary" life. Is this life any more "normal" than life on the Allagash or in Indonesia? Do these chapters change the feeling of Cobb and Marys' love being set outside of everyday life?

If their love changed at all I think it became more precious to them.Even though the setting was normal, as they moved into their home and went back to work, I don't believe it ever became normal or day to day for them.I believed they kept living life at full speed, taking everything in, not wasting any time, appreciating every thing they shared in the time they had left.  I think everything had more meaning to them because they knew the time they had to share would not be long, or as long as it should be for a couple their age.

 

 

 

How is their wedding day different and similar to the mock wedding the Chungamunga girls created for them? What does the gum tree represent for Mary?

I think the Gum tree is like the Allagash to Mary, it represents something Eternal.

 

 

 

How do Cobb's and Marys' families and friends take part in these chapters that they haven't before?

I think they provided support, without smothering Mary and Cobb,  they respected Marys decision to let go when she felt it was time, and didn't add any pressure to their situation.

 

Did you feel prepared to begin seeing Marys symptoms in these chapters? Are Cobb and Mary prepared?

I was hoping I was, but I wasn't, especially when Mary said to Cobb, "it's time" Knowing her death was already a fact did not lessen the sadness.  I think Mary was more prepared than Cobb, he made a promise and was going to honor it, but I think he would have faltered if she gave any signs of not being sure herself.


 


 

Reading gives us someplace to go when we have to stay where we are. -Mason Cooley-
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CathyB
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

 

 

In these chapters, we come to see Mary and Cobb create an ordinary life for themselves. Up to this point, we have known them only outside the context of "ordinary" life. Is this life any more "normal" than life on the Allagash or in Indonesia? Do these chapters change the feeling of Cobb and Mary's love being set outside of everyday life?

 

With the exception of Mary's illness beginning to assert itself, the incidents that are depicted are just the idyllic ones.  Nothing mundane, nothing negative. It is still fantasy-like.

 

What does the home that Cobb and Mary find say about them?

 

Simple, down to earth, sturdy.

 

How is their wedding day different and similar to the mock wedding the Chungamunga girls created for them? What does the gum tree represent for Mary?

 

Similar - close to nature, surrounde by loved ones. Different - legal. The gum tree represents something that has survuved desoite all odds against it ... touching it while getting married binds her to Cobb ... everlasting love.

 

Have you seen All That Heaven Allows? What is it about the film that appeals so strongly to Mary? What is it about the window that the couple share their first kiss in front of? What does the new window do for their home?

 

No, I have not seen the movie. Obviously it has some romantic connotation to her ... what that is exactly, I don't know. One can not and should not base their lives, dreams, expectations on the movies. The window brightens and lights their new home ... emotionally, it adds something too ... once again not quite sure what that is.

 

How do Cobb's and Mary's families and friends take part in these chapters that they haven't before?

 

They are involved with making Mary happy and helping out when they can.

 

Did you feel prepared to begin seeing Mary's symptoms in these chapters? Are Cobb and Mary prepared?


Yes. No and No/Yes.

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dhaupt
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Registered: ‎10-19-2006

Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

In these chapters we do see the more ordinary everyday side to Mary and Cobb and their lifestyle says so much about who they are. Especially when they design the sleeping porch and the special window in their home to put their personal mark on it.

The also interact with their families more in these chapters and we see the love blossom between Mary and Cobb's dad and between Cobb and Mary's mom that brings them under the big umbrella of family. We also see more of Francis here and get a look into not only growing pains but the difficulties of culture differences and what the meaning of true friendship means.

In these chapters I only see Mary and Cobb's relationship intensifying and solidifying into a happy "normal" married life.

The second wedding between Mary and Cobb have a lot of similarities of the first one with the Chungamunga girls where it's in the open with nature and something with a special meaning near by, in this case it's the old tree who according to Mary was standing in the time of  Joan of Arc. The tree is Mary, it's survived not only in spite of it's conditions but because of them and is today what it is because of it's surroundings. It's seen things in it's lifetime that should never have happened and also that were miraculous.

Although I was prepared for the declining of Mary, my heart nearly stopped when it started to happen. I cried for Cobb as well as Mary knowing what was coming. Who can possibly be prepared for a thing like this. 

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maxcat
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

I think there is a change in the last chapters. Mary and Cobb get "married" by Wally at a very old tree near where they live. I didn't see any vows exchanged and Wally did most of the talking and didn't pronounce them husband and wife. It was like something pulled from a fairytale to me. Mary and Cobb go to Yellowstone for their honeymoon. actually Mary received a letter about researching corvids. The changes in Mary seem to really appear here as she was researching in an office and just became disoriented.

Mary found a house one day that look over a brook and the window was big and round. She wanted a house like that and found it. The house didn't have a round window but Cobb's father supplied one and put it in with Pole. I think the house spoke of Mary's love for Cobb and she wanted them to be happy. The window supplied a wonderful view of trees and a brook and I think it made Mary happy. Cobb is trying to please her since the symptoms are becoming noticable.

I think it was a nice gesture to have family and friends, even the Chungamunga girls, appear at Mary's last night. I thought it very fitting for Cobb to send Mary down the Allagash river. It fits so much with the title of the book. Do you think she might become a bunny?

The woods are lovely, dark and deep, but I have promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep - Robert Frost
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illanna
Posts: 7
Registered: ‎10-19-2006

Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

I enjoyed reading these chapters, as Mary and Cobb build a life together. So often, I think, this is the best times in most marriages -- when you're starting out, working hard, sharing one another's successes and disappointments, building a home. 

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nfam
Posts: 231
Registered: ‎01-08-2007

Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

The time had to come when Mary's symptoms would start to manifest themselves. I think the author handles the transition from Mary well to Mary ill very subtly. The home they create is a warm place. A place that combines nature with the out of doors. It's exactly the place I can see them choosing. 

 

The wedding was important, but not more important than the joining we experienced with the Chicamunga girls. The girls brought them together. Mary and Cobb understood that. The formal wedding simply legalized what already was and the tree again, like the river, symbolized eternity. 

 

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coffee_luvr
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

 


I liked these chapters in spite of knowing what would be the outcome for Mary, the couple moved forward with their lives together and seemed to cherish many simple pleasures.  I would have loved for them to have a happily ever after ending........(sigh)
I think the house they buy and the way they approach making it their home is very touching.  I think it let us see how really in tune with nature they both are, whether out camping and kayaking or just simply sleeping under the stars at their home. 

 

 I felt the real" wedding ceremony had to be held outdoors. It would not have fit the story to have it inside.   It was in keeping with where they met, where the "mock" wedding took place and was very in tune with their personalities.   I felt that the gum tree represented timelessness and strength.

 

I saw the movie All That Heaven Allows when I was quite young so I will have to try and see it again.  I can't remember that much about it, but when the author described the window, I remembered that scene vividly.  I think adding the window to their home similar to the movie window isn't just a physical element for Mary, I think it is also emotional.  The activities around finding, installing and enjoying the fruits of their labor ties both Mary and Cobb to the home and their families and friends that helped them.  I looked at it as a way for them to put their personality and influence into the structure. 

As time goes by I fully expected to see more and more of the affects of Mary's illness into their lives. Even though I did expect the disease to progress, I found myself thinking that if I were Cobb, I would be praying for more time......the episodes would just happen and were not expected on that day or time....it was very sad.

 

 


 

 

Without books, history is silent, literature dumb, science crippled, thought and speculation at a standstill. ~Barbara Tuchman
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jabrkeKB
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

Mary and Cobb's love for each other was "normal" for them no matter where they are. The have a very charming relationship.

 

Their home is perfect for them! It fits in with their love of nature and the outdoors.

 

The wedding was the same in that it was simple and the same words were used. It was different because family members were present. I liked the respect Mary had for the gum tree. She saw how special it was that it had survived so many years.

 

I have not seen the movie, I think I will rent it.

 

The family and friends are more involved with Mary and Cobb in these chapters.

 

I was prepared for Mary's symptoms and I believe that Mary and Cobb were also.

 

 

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freelamp
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

When a stone is thrown into water, circles spread out from that point.  The circles of life are similarly spreading for Mary and Cobb as they do the usual things newly married people do.  The setting is perfect for them and finding the window seems to complete another circle in having the house just as Mary wanted it.  All of Mary's circle of family and friends know what is coming and are prepared.  As the end of life for her comes to full circle, we are returned to where it all began.  Death is part of Mary's life, painful as it may be for those left behind.  I love the dignity the characters have for each other and that is something I think is missing from our 'end of life' sagas.  There is turmoil in nature but also peace and it is that peace we seek at the end.

freelamp
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DSaff
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

This book is so powerful in so many ways! I feel so priviledged to have read it.

 

The house was absolutely perfect for Mary and Cobb, and the window, well that was the cherry on top. With the woods and land around them, they had a place away from the rat race, a place to rest. I loved the sleeping platform too. It wouldn't have been their place without that! And, I never felt that they were only doing things because Mary was dying. They did them because they were in love and beginning their life together. The wedding was wonderful. I could picture it. The addition of the tree, and its longevity, affirmed their love for each other, the land and nature. They were even able to get everyone they wanted there. Everything here fit their personalities perfectly!

 

I felt prepared for the appearance of Mary's symptoms because of the beginning of the book. But, I didn't want them to start. I kept hoping for another explanation each time something happened. But, it was not to be. I found this section of the book, as the others, very well written and engrossing. I will not forget the story or the characters easily, and I am looking forward to finding out more about the disease and any work being done for a cure.

DonnaS =) " Reading is a means of thinking with another person's mind; it forces you to stretch your own." Charles Scribner
"A book is like a garden carried in the pocket." Chinese Proverb
My blog: http://bookworm56.blogspot.com
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DSaff
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

I'm glad to know that someone else cried!  :smileywink:

 


dhaupt wrote:

In these chapters we do see the more ordinary everyday side to Mary and Cobb and their lifestyle says so much about who they are. Especially when they design the sleeping porch and the special window in their home to put their personal mark on it.

The also interact with their families more in these chapters and we see the love blossom between Mary and Cobb's dad and between Cobb and Mary's mom that brings them under the big umbrella of family. We also see more of Francis here and get a look into not only growing pains but the difficulties of culture differences and what the meaning of true friendship means.

In these chapters I only see Mary and Cobb's relationship intensifying and solidifying into a happy "normal" married life.

The second wedding between Mary and Cobb have a lot of similarities of the first one with the Chungamunga girls where it's in the open with nature and something with a special meaning near by, in this case it's the old tree who according to Mary was standing in the time of  Joan of Arc. The tree is Mary, it's survived not only in spite of it's conditions but because of them and is today what it is because of it's surroundings. It's seen things in it's lifetime that should never have happened and also that were miraculous.

Although I was prepared for the declining of Mary, my heart nearly stopped when it started to happen. I cried for Cobb as well as Mary knowing what was coming. Who can possibly be prepared for a thing like this. 


 

 

DonnaS =) " Reading is a means of thinking with another person's mind; it forces you to stretch your own." Charles Scribner
"A book is like a garden carried in the pocket." Chinese Proverb
My blog: http://bookworm56.blogspot.com
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carol_fa
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

 

 

In these chapters, we come to see Mary and Cobb create an ordinary life for themselves. Up to this point, we have known them only outside the context of "ordinary" life. Is this life any more "normal" than life on the Allagash or in Indonesia? Do these chapters change the feeling of Cobb and Mary's love being set outside of everyday life?

Cobb & Mary's relationship is idyllic, they are so in love. These chapters just solidify their love for one another.

 

What does the home that Cobb and Mary find say about them?

 

Their home seems so cozy and warm.  Very down to earth just like the two of them.

 

How is their wedding day different and similar to the mock wedding the Chungamunga girls created for them? What does the gum tree represent for Mary?

 

The gum tree represents eternity, just like their love. Their wedding day was shared with their respective families. Not that The Chungamunga girls weren't family.

 

Have you seen All That Heaven Allows? What is it about the film that appeals so strongly to Mary? What is it about the window that the couple share their first kiss in front of? What does the new window do for their home?

I have not seen the movie. The window allows them to see the nature that they both love.

 

How do Cobb's and Mary's families and friends take part in these chapters that they haven't before?

 

They are there for Mary and Cobb, just like a family should be.

 

Did you feel prepared to begin seeing Mary's symptoms in these chapters? Are Cobb and Mary prepared?

 

I was definitely not prepared to see Mary's symptoms start, I knew they would, I just didn't want them to. It made me cry. I do not think Cobb is prepared, Mary acts prepared, but who is really prepared for death?

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Bonnie_C
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

In these chapters, Mary and Cobb find comfort and happiness with each other, their family and friends and their new home.  They do indeed seem to be soul mates.

 

I have not seen the movie in question, but in my mind the huge window was a way to bring nature in a little closer .

 

Their wedding to me was more of a reaffirmation of their 1st wedding vows.  This time family and friends were included.  This marriage was also legal which I think may be helpful for Cobb in helping to deal with future medical and legal issues with Mary.

 

How agonizing it would be to constantly question the day to day little gaffs.  "Did I just forget her name or is it the disease?"  "Did I just stumble or is it the disease?"  But then the disease takes hold and then the day comes when Mary says "The time has come."  How can you ever be ready?

 

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PiperMurphy
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves


Rachel-K wrote:

Hi all,

 

Please use any of the following questions to start discussions for chapters 11 - 16, or feel free to post your own throughts and questions for the group!

 

In these chapters, we come to see Mary and Cobb create an ordinary life for themselves. Up to this point, we have known them only outside the context of "ordinary" life. Is this life any more "normal" than life on the Allagash or in Indonesia? Do these chapters change the feeling of Cobb and Mary's love being set outside of everyday life?

 

I felt that these chapters were a natural progression to building a life together. It isn't more "normal", it's their foundation. I thought that these chapters strengthened their love.

 

 

What does the home that Cobb and Mary find say about them?

 

Their home brings the outdoors inside.  They seem to have surrounded themselves with all the things they love about nature. I would love a house like theirs.

 

 

How is their wedding day different and similar to the mock wedding the Chungamunga girls created for them? What does the gum tree represent for Mary?

 

Their real wedding was more spontaneous, but also more meaningful to Mary. The gum tree represented long life and a long marriage.

 

 

 

Did you feel prepared to begin seeing Mary's symptoms in these chapters? Are Cobb and Mary prepared?

 

I knew that Mary's symptoms would start to manifest at some point just like Cobb and Mary knew. It was inevitable. I'm not sure that Mary was prepared for the first episode in Yellowstone, but Cobb wasn't. It was easy to feel his fear and worry.


 


 

"When I have a little money, I buy books; and if I have any left, I buy food and clothes."
~Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus~
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TamCG
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

I as well enjoyed these chapters of the book very much.  The home that they found seemed absolutely perfect for them - leave it to them to find the HG cottage the moment it goes on the market (hey it does happen to some :smileyhappy:  I loved seeing them grow together in their relationship and with the many friendships they had.  

 

Even though we were already aware of the ending seeing the beginning of her symptoms was definitely hard.  Having a father with MS I totally felt for Cobb and Mary's family.  It's never an easy thing to watch something slowly progressing downhill.  I think the author did a wonderful job with expressing the many emotions of the family memebers and how they felt from each standpoint.  And I agree with so many others that stated the same - are you ever really prepared... I think not, more so you may have just grown a harder shell in the process that will help to break your fall in the end.      

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literature
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Registered: ‎10-19-2006

Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

 

The movie All That Heaven Allows is one of my all time favorites.  I've seen it many,  many times and still cry watching it.  The two things that stuck out most in my mind from that movie was (1) the feelings that existed between Jane Wyman and Rock Hudson, almost from the beginning, and (2) the window.  I never forgot that window.   I thought it was the most beautiful window I'd ever seen.  Even though I now hate winter and also snow, I would love to be sitting inside just so I could look out the window at the beautiful, snowy landscape.  (It's okay to visit snow.)  
Once Jane Wyman said "What the house could be, what their love could be like, what beauty they could share", Mary immediately knew that that was her and Cobb and she would find that house in that setting.  Even though Mary lived with the threat of HD, she was still a positive person and I firmly believe that she would have been no different than if she knew she did'nt have the potential for HD.  Mary found the house and as she said to Cobb "This, my friend, is what positive thinking can do...The universe has heard my call and is now responding."  Not only did she find the perfect house but it also had the Lamprey River running through town.  The river was named for John Lamprey, whose name was Saxon for 'a woodland enclosure where peace is to be found."  Once inside, Mary felt that the house had the same feeling as in All That Heaven Allows.  It resembled the mill building, had wide pine floors, a fire place and bookshelves everywhere. After contemplating which room the window was to go into, Mary wanted it in the livingroom because that's where it was in the movie.  Wally even took a picture of them in front of the window, just like Jane and Rock.
Cobb and Mary have now settled down into a "normal" life but their love still grows strongly.  On the Allagash they had met and started learning about each other.  Indonesia was a getaway vacation where they relaxed but still continued to learn more about each other.  Once they returned back to the states and their jobs, they led the "normal" life and still remained very committed to each other.  This house, plus getting married, completed the emotional bond that they shared for each other. 
The love that Mary and Cobb share with each other is something so beautiful and it can exist in real life. The love at first sight is a feeling between two people and, when found, can be very precious and should be acted upon.  Mary starts to show symptoms of the disease; Cobb is aware of some changes in her and together they try to weather it.  I was not, and still am not, ready for these changes in Mary.  I wanted to see them grow older together and have the disease surface when Mary is much older.  They had so much going for each other, why end it now?  Cobb tried very hard to follow the conditions given by Mary and she helped him.  You have to be very committed to a person to go through this with them and they were.

 

 

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momoftwinsMM
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Re: Eternal on the Water, Chapters 11 - 16: Wolves

I agree that their ordinary life was still not "normal." How many people sleep underneath the stars even when it is cold? I appreciate how they grasp every moment and see the beauty in it. They are inspiring me to do the same (although, I don't think I will be sleeping under the stars anytime soon)

 

As for being prepared for Mary's symptoms, I was not. I knew it was coming, but I was in denial. That moment when she told Cobb "It's time", was just as emotional for me. I did get teary, even though we knew the entire story had been leading to this moment. I almost hoped that Cobb would go back on his promise, but that would have not been true to his character either.