It's fun to see the interplay between Ian and Jamie, learning how they grew up together and got into equal amounts of trouble with each other's fathers. The bonds of the families seemed stronger in that period. Maybe it's just a romanticized view of life, but it seems that people bonded closely in the rural, agrarian lifestyle of the Highlands.
It makes me think wistfully of my own childhood, as I grew up in a rural area, surrounded by working farms, but not living on one. Maybe it's just the golden tinges of reminiscence, but it seems we were more in tune with the seasons and with nature in general than the suburban lifestyle I've now become accustomed to. As kids we also spent time with neighbors and friends, "exploring" the surrounding meadows and hills, and getting into our fair share of trouble, as well.
|Interesting how Rockwell pictures the woman |
providing the discipline...or attempting to.
In the context of this chapter, I can recall the shared punishments of neighbor fathers, as the three of us who were the same age would manage to get into equivalent measures of mischief. Looking back as an adult with my own children now, I can only imagine how those dads must have struggled with the pugnacious male adolescents who were quickly draining their patience and longsuffering.
Hearing of Jenny's encounter with Randall must have been difficult for Jamie to endure. Ian was rightfully indignant and hurt to learn of the raw emotion and vulgar brutality of Jenny's experience. I can only hope that this would be a shared moment that strengthens their relationship in a wider context.
As Jamie relates to Claire his own regret regarding his relationship with his father, it made me think of how the death of a loved one can simply magnify their life. Everything they said takes on more meaning and import, and many times we can feel as if their life somehow becomes larger than it was, more meaningful in ways that we neglected to recognize during their time with us; or rather, our time with them. We should always be sure to share openly and honestly with those who are close to us so that, when the inevitable happens, we can truly enjoy and savor the memories of those fleeting moments.