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The Importance Of Hope In My Hotel Year And Things That Fly

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Hope is a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen. In the short stories “My hotel year” by Douglas Coupland, we have a view of the doomed relationship of two Headbangers who are clearly lost in life. We meet the narrator who is going through a rough path, but is full of hope that this rough path is only temporary. The short story “Things that fly” also by Douglas Coupland, is explaining the daily routine of the main character that is going through a heartbreak and how she escapes the pain and loneliness by hoping. In both short stories, we learn about the importance of hope when going through a rough path and the author demonstrated This through multiple symbolisms and flashbacks.

In the short story “My hotel year” the characters show us that you have to hope in order to find yourself and move on. The author uses flashbacks to portray that the narrator succeeded in moving on from the rough path that she was going through. In the title of the short story “My hotel year” (Coupland P25), we see that she is remembering all this from a better place and she is going back to these memories only to remind herself how far she came from. “I had been going through a patch of intense brooding” (P29), In this piece of the short story she is referring to her hurt in the pass tense to amplify on the fact that she got over this path and is currently in the better place that she was hoping for. For the character Cathy, the author used symbolism to express her hope on moving on. In this quote, “Bye, bye, fishies.” (P53) She is letting go of the fishes as a symbol of letting go of her hurting and all the things she went through in order to move on and hope for the better. “In the end Donny got his wish and he did get shot” (P66), Donny was shown in this story as a coward compared to the other characters, he too had hope but he hoped for an ending. He was feeling lonely and unwanted therefore, he chose the coward way out and wished death upon himself. In this short story, all of the characters deal with their hurt and trouble differently but at the end they all had hope to help them on continuing.

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In the short story “Things that fly” the narrator frequently uses hope as an escape from things that stress him. The narrator has a repetitive dream of flying, “I simply put my arms behind my shoulders and float and move.” (P86), his dream is symbolic of how he would love to be able to fly away from all of his problems. This dream is also a symbol of the hope he has for one day to be able to be far away from his problems and hurting. Even to the narrator is going through a heartbreak, he is showing signs of hope on experiencing love once again. The narrator explained that whooping cranes performing a mating dance looked so sweet and graceful, (P87). This shows that the even with the trauma that he is experiencing, the door of hope in love is still open. Throughout the complete short story, there are multiple things that are flying and are being referred to. They are all in one way or another referring to the symbol of freedom that the narrator hope and pray for, (P88). To him, the ability to fly is the ability to truly feel free. He believes that everything that can fly have the ability to simply fly away from them. In the short story “Things that fly” the narrator used a lot of symbolism to show how he hope to fly away from all his issues.

As a student in social service hope is a big help on dealing with lost, hurt and other similar feelings. Hope underpins the recovery process and a big part of recovery depends on the fact the patient desires to get better. Getting past a big trauma is hard work and sometimes just hoping for a better tomorrow provide enough strength to keep on going. The wonderful thing about hope is the promise of s future reward. Some may want to explore love, acceptance, understanding just like the characters in these short stories. All of them exist even if you have not experienced these wonderful aspects of life yet, all you have to do is not give in to despair and to carry the sensation of hope.

In conclusion, the short stories “My hotel year” and “Things that fly” by Douglas Coupland is the best start in the understanding the role that hope plays in recovering from a hard time. The multiple characters show a different way of hoping and also a different type of hope. Two of the characters from “My hotel year”, the narrator and Cathy, were hoping for a better life while Donny was hoping on getting killed. In the short story “Things that fly” also by Coupland, we have a character that is not hoping on feeling better and dealing with his issue but instead he is hoping to be able to fly. He thinks that by having the ability to fly he it will be easier for him to fly away from what is hurting him without dealing with it. Hope is also a big part in recovery in our everyday life, some patient that are going through a lot of trauma uses the idea of a better tomorrow to generate strength to keep on going.

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The Importance Of Hope In My Hotel Year And Things That Fly. (2022, February 18). Edubirdie. Retrieved September 27, 2023, from
“The Importance Of Hope In My Hotel Year And Things That Fly.” Edubirdie, 18 Feb. 2022,
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