What are Leila's feelings before the ball in the story "Her First Ball"?

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M.P. Ossa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Leila, the main character of "Her First Ball" is indirectly described as a girl who lives in an area that is quite isolated from the excitement of the city. In fact she even says that her closest neighbor lives 15 miles away. This is why this event, her first ball, is such a rare and exciting ocasion.

She tried not to smile too much; she tried not to care. But every single thing was so new and exciting.

On her way to the ball she has a variety of emotions. First, she feels almost as if to cry when she sees the dynamics between Laurie and Laura; she would have loved to have a brother that would call her by a nickname, such as "Twig". Everything Leila saw she felt like holding as a keepsake.

It is fair to say that Leila did not feel as wordly or sophisticated as her friends; she is an only child, she lives in the country, and this is her first ball. It is clear that she has not experienced what her friends have.

Yet, what is salient about Leila's experience is that she sees everything much more glittering, much more enticing and exciting than what it really is. This is not a bad thing; after all, she is going through a rite of passage which is proper of girls of her class. However, the height of her excitement is precisely what will deflate her later with the advent of the fat man.

user9670010 | Student
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