The Address Class 11 by Marga Minco
Summary of The Address
‘The Address’ centers around a daughter who goes in search of her mother’s belongings after the war, in Holland. She finds all the objects which evoke memories of her earlier life. However, she decides to leave them all behind and resolves to move on.
The chapter begins when Mrs. S’s daughter visits Mrs. Dorling’s house after the liberation war in Holland. She remembers the address, therefore reaches there and meets a woman (Mrs. Dorling) whom she knows very well.
To her surprise, Mrs. Dorling who was a frequent visitor to their home before the war, refuses to recognise her. The narrator introduces herself again and again but all in vain. Mrs. Dorling is wearing a green knotted cardigan which once used to be owned by Mrs. S, her mother. Narrator wants to talk to Mrs. Dorling but latter turns a blind eye and shuts the door on her face.
Narrator once again confirms the address by looking at the name-plate again which suggests Mrs. Dorling in black letters on white enamel and a house number i.e. 46.
Having been dejected by Mrs. Dorling, the narrator walks slowly to the station. While walking down, she recalls the moments spent with her mother and the time when things had started disappearing from her room as well as home. When enquired, her mother told the narrator about Mrs. Dorling who was an old acquaintance my mother, whom she had not seem for years. But, suddenly she had turned up and renewed her contact with her mother.
Narrator’s mother also adds that every time she leaves there, she takes something home with her. According to her mother, Mrs. Dorling had taken everything starting from antique plates to the crockery used at their home. In short, she would insist to give all those things in order to save them from the war. Accoding to her mother, she would carry a full suitcase or a bag stuffed with house hold things. Her mother wanted the narrator to remember the ‘Number 46, Marconi Street’ i.e address of Mrs. Dorling.
Narrator, once again, decides to go to Mrs. Dorling home. This time, a girl of about fifteen opens the door. Narrator enquires if her mother was at home. She denies saying that she has been to market to run an errand.
Narrator enters her house and sees an old-fashioned Hanukkah candle holder, wooden table cloth, tea-pot, spoons and many other things which once belonged to her mother. She even feels the burn mark which is still there on the table cloth.
But soon she realises that she has to catch her train. She leaves the house and decides never to come back again and to forget the address of Mrs. Dorling’s home.
Important Questions/Answers of The Address
Q1. Why did the narrator go to Mrs. Dorling’s house twice? What was her experience there?
Ans. Mrs. Dorling had taken away all the belongings and valuables of her mother for keeping them safe. In order to feel and touch those things, which were once owned by them, she went there twice. On the other hand, Mrs. Dorling refused to recognise her. In her second visit, she noticed all the things but she came out of the house as she was getting distressed.
Q2. How did the narrator recognise Mrs. Dorling? What was Mrs. Dorling’s reaction?
Ans. When the narrator went to Marconi Street to meet Mrs. Dorling, she saw that the latter was wearing a cardigan which was her mother’s. Having seen the colour and the buttons of that carding, the narrator was sure that she had reached the right address. On the contrary, Mrs. Dorling refused to recognise her and asked how she returned alive from the war.
Q3. Why do you think Mrs. S permitted Mrs. Dorling to take away all the valuable things ?
Ans. Mrs. S and her daugter hailed from Jewish. At the time of the war, all the Jews were being evacuated by the Nazi army as soon as possible. Moreover, there was no security of life and property. In order to keep her belongings safe, Mrs. S allowed Mrs. Dorling to take away all those valuable things.
Q4. How did the narrator find out that there was a burnt mark table cloth?
Ans. During her second visit to Mrs. Dorling’s house, she noticed a woolen table cloth. The moment she had a look at it, she figured out that it was theirs. She, soon, tried to find out a burn mark which she used to notice a lot at her home when she was a child. Ultimately, she managed to find out that burn mark.
Q5. Why did the narrator want to forget that address forever?
Ans. The narrator had a painful experience when she got a cold shoulder from Mrs. Dorling. Besides, she felt very much depressed to see the things which were once theirs. She had her mother’s memories associated with all those things which had been haunting her badly. Therefore, she decided to leave everything in the custody of Mrs. Dorling.
Q6. How did the narrator manage to get Mrs. Dorling’s address? What took her so long to go there?
Ans. The narrator was, once, introduced to Mrs. Dorling when she had come home. She had also noticed Mrs. Dorling taking away their belongings one by one. After slight interrogation, Mrs. S told her the address of Mrs. Dorling which was House no. 46, Marconi Street and asked her to remember it.
Q7. How do you see Mrs. Dorling and her behaviour in The Address.
Ans. Mrs. Dorling was a cunning woman who had got a fair enough idea how to take advantage of others. Firstly, She came in the good books of Mrs. S and later take away all the valuable and priceless things from her. People like hers, are in abundance everywhere in the world who cheat and deceive other by playing with sentiments of others.
Q8. How was Mrs. Dorling’s daughter different from that of her mother?
Ans. Mrs. Dorling knew that the narrator had come back to take away all the things of her mother which were once taken by her assuring Mrs. S that she would keep them safe. As a result, she gave a cold shoulder to her and even refused to recognize her. On the contrary, Mrs. Dorling’s daughter was slightly better and welcoming. She let the narrator enter her house and offered her a cup of tea/coffee as well.
We would love your reading of The Summer of the Beautiful White Horse, Ranga’s Marriage, Albert Einstein at School , Mother’s Day, The Ghat of the Only World, Birth, The Tale of the Melon City for better understanding of the chapter and scoring higher in your exams.
Kindly share if you liked the summary and questions/answers of The Address. For more updates, keep logging on BrainyLads