Islands in the Stream Part 1, Chapter 11 Summary

Ernest Hemingway

Part 1, Chapter 11 Summary

They all enjoy a feast of steak and potatoes, with trimmings, after the trying day. The men and boys praise Eddy’s excellence as a cook. Tom asks if they can go down to Mr. Bobby’s and trick the people on the yacht into thinking Andrew is a rummy. Thomas Hudson gives permission as long as they explain their game to the constable. Andrew says he will wait until after lunch so he will not get sick. Roger offers to go with Tom to prepare for the stunt. David is going to take a nap and then read.

Thomas Hudson spends the afternoon sketching in preparation for his painting of David and the fish. He discusses the details with David, who suggests that they ask Eddy, who has a keen eye and memory. David admires Eddy and wishes Roger were as happy as Eddie is. Thomas Hudson explains that Roger is more complicated than Eddy. Eddy does something well, and he does it every day.

Talk turns to the “pretend rummy business.” Thomas Hudson is only mildly concerned about what the yacht people will think. He asks David about other stunts he and his brothers have pulled in the past. Tom and Roger return and explain the preparations they have made with Bobby.

They go down to the bar, where the people from the yacht are sitting. Bobby plays his part, serving Roger and Thomas Hudson while showing his contempt for them. The yacht people are watching closely but politely. Bobby gives Andy a glass of gin, which is really tea Bobby has put into the bottle. Tom pretends to be in tears, begging Roger to stop drinking, saying he has writing he must do.

Bobby gives Andy a third “drink” and asks Thomas Hudson when he is going to get the painting of the waterspouts out of his bar. The man from the yacht interrupts and offers to buy the painting. Bobby continues to treat Roger and Thomas Hudson like contemptuous drunks, while he cheerfully refills Andy’s glass. He pretends he does not know to what painting the yacht man is referring. Another man suggests they leave, upset that Bobby is serving children liquor. A young girl joins in and agrees. They finally leave the bar. Another girl stays because she realizes it is a joke. The man who wants to purchase the painting repeats his offer, but Bobby refuses to sell. Thomas Hudson directs the man to his agent in New York, but the man continues to badger. Roger invites the young girl to come up to the house.