How does the narrator use adjectives and descriptive phrases to convey his feelings of awe and intimidation regarding the character he describes?

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This passage is from an early section of Willa Cather's novel My Antonia, in which Jim Burden is first introduced to the character of Otto Fuchs. Jim is just a boy and is new to Nebraska, having just arrived by train from Virginia, and this new man impresses him to no end. Jim later learns that Otto is much nicer than he first appears.

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