Study Guide

Like Water for Chocolate Chapter 8

By Laura Esquivel

Chapter 8

AUGUST, Champandongo

  • Cursed onions. Not only do they always make Tita cry, they cause her to accidentally cut her finger.
  • Tita is off her cooking-game and running late, thanks to her niece, Esperanza ("hope" in English).
  • In a flashback, we learn that Esperanza was born three months premature, just like Tita.
  • Once again, Tita takes care of the baby in the house— she feeds her "gruels and teas" a la Nacha.
  • Out of necessity, Tita keeps Esperanza in kitchen because Rosaura can't take care of her while recuperating (she had to have an operation which left her sterile). No más babies.
  • Back to the present, Esperanza cries more than usual and causes Tita to drop her pan of mole.
  • Holy mole. Pedro chooses a pretty crappy moment to tell Tita that she shouldn't marry John.
  • Tita (finally) tells him to leave her alone.
  • But the man is persistent—Pedro says he should have run away with her.
  • Tita (again: finally) calls him out for being a wuss.
  • She goes back to cooking, but is super PO'd: "The anger she felt within her acted like yeast on bread dough" (8,507).
  • Adding more fuel to her angry fire, Tita contemplates how Pedro's rage dominates her thoughts and actions; it makes her "like water for chocolate," on the verge of boiling over.
  • Chencha's back. She appears in the house, fully recovered and with an hombre: Jesus Martinez. In no time at all the two got married and want to live on the ranch and have muchos babies.
  • Chencha takes over in kitchen so Tita can shower before John arrives.
  • Tita takes a shower; when she looks up, Pedro's watching her….uh, kind of creepy, P.
  • Not to worry, though; Tita manages to run away before anything scandalous can occur.
  • While setting the table, Tita hears Pedro and John arguing about the current political situation.
  • Since Pedro is the man of the house, John asks him permission to marry Tita.
  • Not really having a choice, Pedro says yes.
  • Bling bling. John gives Tita a diamond ring—no more single ladies on the ranch.
  • In a heated round of cheers, Pedro breaks his glass and splatters champagne on the guests.
  • After supper, John leaves, Tita cleans, and Chencha prepares her and Jesus's bed for the night.
  • Tita stores the kitchen utensils in the "dark room."
  • Pedro slips inside the room (he's good at that, isn't he?), extinguishes Tita's lamp and "caused her to lose her virginity and learn of true love" (8, 538).
  • Meanwhile, Rosaura tries to put Esperanza to sleep; all of a sudden she sees "a strange glow" coming from the dark room.
  • Mama E? Chencha sees the light and says "can't you see it's a ghost of the dead."
  • Oh, the irony. Because nobody wants to be near Mama E's "ghost," Tita and Pedro are free to get it on all they want.