Short Story 'Somewhere, A Long Happy Life Probably Awaits You'

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“Is Manfred portrayed as an ideal husband towards Elizabeth? Does he change by the end?” The short story, “Somewhere, a Long Happy Life Probably Awaits You” by Jill Sexsmith, is about a strange woman named Elizabeth, who spends the last moments of her life with her dying elm tree. The male character, Manfred, deals with Elizabeth’s strange personality. Manfred may be portrayed as a character whom people might feel sorry for. His wife is dying and he is doing all he can to make Elizabeth happy in her last moments. Manfred may also be portrayed as a selfish character. He is already thinking of a new imaginary wife named Samantha, while Elizabeth is still around. At the beginning, Manfred did not understand why Elizabeth cares so much about…show more content…
In the beginning, he does not understand why she cares so much about the elm tree. He is constantly mentioning the cons of being with Elizabeth. One of those cons is that Elizabeth tends to wander off when she is on her safaris. He would post missing posters around the neighbourhood and he would have to ride around in a police cruiser until they found her. The police officer would apologize to him and tell him “That’s got to suck” (Pg. 57). Manfred already accepted the fact that Elizabeth is going to die. He mentions a few times throughout the story of a new wife and wonders if he will do better with the new wife. By doing so, he forgets about Elizabeth’s happiness. Elizabeth wants to renew their vows because it is one of her happiest moments and Manfred seems to forget that when he refuses to do so. He only worries about Hedwig getting angry because Elizabeth is picking the daisies from her garden. Hedwig knows about Elizabeth’s condition and she reminds Manfred, “In case you didn’t know shit dip, your wife is dying” (Pg. 61). Manfred begins to change after the reminder. He begins to realize that his wife is not going to be around for much longer so he needs to make sure she’s happy until the end. He carries Elizabeth back inside and he recites his vows to her. He does not mention about a new wife after this, he only focuses on Elizabeth. He fulfills Elizabeth’s wish by building a treehouse and moving into it, despite his

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