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The Sun Also Rises

            In Ernest Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises, the fishing trip taken by Jake and Bill is a purely positive experience. While enjoying each other's company, the two men can escape from the fast-paced stress of Paris life into the cascading mountains of rural Spain. Without the stifling atmosphere of hot Paris, Jake can forget not only his physical work, but also the emotional distraught he faces with Brett. On the way into Spain, the two comrades encounter some of the native Basque travelers who "wanted us to drink from their leather wine-bottles" (Ernest Hemingway, The Sun Also Rises. (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1954, 111) All other references to this work will be documented parenthetically in the text). The Basque people are very selfless and cheerful towards Jake and Bill, contrary to Brett and Cohn who manage to think completely of themselves. The "fat woman" (109) who graciously welcomes Jake and Bill also contrasts lovely Brett, further eliminating unwanted angst for Jake while in Spain. In addition to the Basques and their hostess, Harris is another character who positively enhances the atmosphere of the trip. Harris brightens their trip with his good-natured charisma creating "such a jolly good time" (129). In addition to the people on the trip, it is also essential to the mood that Jake does not have to think about Brett and Mike, or Cohn. While Jake normally has trouble settling his thoughts to get to sleep at night in Paris, he feels "good to be warm and in bed" (111) in Spain. The atmosphere of Spain is full of generous people, as well as a bountiful landscape. The atmosphere is completely lush with "smooth grass, very green and fresh, and the big gray trees well spaced" (117). Bill and Jake take in each moment with joy, a sense of calm, and at times humor, summing up simply that "this is country" (117). The atmosphere of Spain is the epitome of the good life where the men can enjoy themselves, without the pains of reality.

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