Study Guide

Animal Dreams Chapter 19

By Barbara Kingsolver

Chapter 19

The Bread Girl

  • Loyd and Codi arrive in Santa Rosalia Pueblo.
  • Loyd puts on a pair of moccasins when they get there and tells Codi it's because his mom used to get really ticked off if he and Leander showed up in cowboy boots and hats.
  • That sounds just like Codi and Hallie. Remember how Doc forced them to give up their cowboy hats and popguns when they were kids?
  • Well, as usual, Codi doesn't really remember. She can only remember the lacquered red straw of the hat and the terrible sad feeling that went with it.
  • Codi and Loyd drive up to the village, which is basically camouflaged against the surrounding rocks.
  • Loyd's sister, Birdie, meets them at the door, and they speak in Keres, which is the Pueblo language.
  • Then Codi meets Loyd's mom, Inez, and his other sisters, niece, aunt Sonia and "naval mother."
  • It's very domestic, and Codi feels super out of place, even though she jokes around with Inez.
  • Codi looks around the house and spots the pot Loyd brought back for his mother in the Canyon de Chelly. She also spots a picture of Loyd and Leander.
  • When Codi sees the picture, she really starts to get it about Leander, and about how much Loyd lost a part of himself when his brother died.
  • They all have a huge Christmas feast and an awesome time.
  • Codi really likes Inez's homemade bread. She eats so much of it that Loyd's family starts calling her the Bread Girl. Good one, Peregrina clan.
  • Loyd tells Codi what a naval mother is, and that the Pueblo don't count you as born until your mother recovers from the birth.
  • Codi says in that case Hallie doesn't really have a birthday.
  • In the morning, Loyd's mom sends in a whole loaf of bread for their breakfast, and everyone goes up to the rooftops to watch a ceremony, where there will be dancing from morning to night.
  • Loyd tells Codi that he doesn't know why his dad was such a loser, but he grew up in a boarding school.
  • Codi thinks about how she's sort of already decided that she's undeserving of love. Having lost both her mother and her baby, she thinks she will probably lose everything she loves.
  • Codi thinks that Hallie sort of can't judge her, because Hallie's never loved and lost that deeply—like Loyd says, she's never been born.
  • Codi and Loyd watch a bunch of amazing dances, and Loyd says that many of them are about rain.
  • Codi asks if the dances are transactional—like, We dance for you gods, and then we get rain. Loyd says they're more like notes of acknowledgement and thanks for letting people use the world as guests.
  • Codi thinks about how Anglo-Americans treat the world like it's there just for their use, and she feels grossed out.
  • In addition to the mine that's poisoning Grace, Loyd also showed Codi a spot on the Navajo reservation where the mountains were being mined savagely for pumice in order to make stonewashed jeans.
  • The dancers start making fun of Codi and Loyd, basically saying they're k-i-s-s-i-n-g, and Codi's like, They don't even know me, and Loyd's like, Well, they know my mom likes you.
  • After a while, there's a dance with the kids taking people's individual blessings and dancing them in the direction of the blessed.
  • Codi asks for a blessing for Hallie.

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