A day’s wait is an excellent story written by ‘Ernest Hemingway’. This simple story revolves round a nine year old child named “Schatz”, his father and his doctor. The story excellently portrays the emotions of fears in the mind of an innocent nine year old child. The timeline of the entire story is of one hour during which Schatz comes to know about his high temperature, gets terrified and believes he is going to die because of the wrong impression in his mind.
The story starts with Schatz entering his father’s room at 9:00 am looking very ill. There is frozen ice all around the ground. Schatz has fear all over his face which worries his father. His father calls in the doctor for a complete check up of his son. The whole trauma starts when the doctor declares that Schatz is suffering from high fever, above 102 degrees.
Schatz is confused and scared upon hearing this. He immediately remembers what he heard from boys in France that temperature about 40 is certain death. Although he is just nine year old and has little understanding of the thermometer readings is scared of this. As his father explains to him the readings on a thermometer and convinces him that high temperature does not cause death, his worries faint and he feels relieved and relaxed.
The doctor also plays a vital role in the story. He is the one who deduces symptoms of high fever in Schatz and diagnoses symptoms of influenza. Afterwards he prescribes appropriate medication to the child.
At one point Schatz fear of his certain death causes him to lock himself in his room while his father is gone for hunting. He refuses to let anyone in his room. People in the neighborhood try to make him understand the truth about thermometer readings but he was so much devastated and convinced of his death that he rejects any interference.
The story is beautifully written in a manner giving Schatz both a positive and a negative role. He is a determined child with strong will power. Schatz sends out an important message this story, ‘Don’t believe everything what you hear’. One should not blindly believe everything he is told and must probe the situation himself.
The story finally concludes when the little innocent mind understands that his fever will not kill him if he takes proper medication and takes care of himself.