How does Nadia's ability to understand the turtles help her in View From Saturday?
How does Nadia's ability to understand the turtles help her understand herself, her parents, and their mutual situation?
Nadia learns the importance of both giving and receiving help ("a lift") - from the turtles. She also discovers a striking parallel between their life cycles and her own, which enables her to better understand the situation between herself and her parents.
Through a quirk of nature, the young turtles are regularly deposited during their lifetime in a place where many of them will either require help to resettle in their normal habitat, or "be lost at sea". As Nadia's Dad says, "They need a lift". It is to help the turtles that Nadia and her Dad give up their trip to Disney World at the request of her Grandfather Izzy.
In the life cycle of the turtle, there are a number of years, between the time they leave their original home and the time they are twenty-five and old enough to mate, when they must "commute" between their second homes and their native beaches. Nadia likens their situation to her own, since now that her parents are divorced, she will have to be shuttled between her mother's and her father's homes in the summer and fall each year until she is old enough to be on her own.
Nadia's realization that the turtles will require "help" to get by during their commuting years helps her see that she, too, will sometimes "need a lift", as will her parents. By understanding the needs of the turtles and experiencing the joy of being able to help them out, she is able to come to terms with her own situation. Nadia understands that not only she, but her parents also, will need to help each other get by (Chapter 2).