Study Guide

The Price of Salt, or Carol Chapter 3

By Patricia Highsmith

Chapter 3

  • At work, Therese bangs her leg.
  • She patches the wound with a maxi pad from the bathroom vending machine. This giant department store doesn't sell bandages?
  • Back in the toy department, she sells a doll to a blonde woman, and Therese finds herself intensely attracted to this woman, Mrs. H.F. Aird.
  • The woman buys the doll C.O.D. Ah, the 1950s, when you could have a store deliver you items and pay for them when they arrive.
  • Therese forgets to give the woman the C.O.D. slip and rushes after her, excited for the opportunity to talk to the woman again.
  • When the woman leaves for good, Therese keeps thinking about her.
  • She decides to send the woman a Christmas card. She considers writing on it "You are magnificent" or "I love you," but instead tells her "Special salutations" (3.71). It's slightly less creepy.
  • The next day, the woman calls to thank Therese for the card. She asks Therese if she wants to join her for a cup of coffee, and Therese excitedly says yes.