Essay on Ada's Metamorphosis to Independent Woman in Cold Mountain

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Ada's Metamorphosis to Independent Woman in Cold Mountain


As Ada arrives at Black Cove, she and her father are completely unprepared for a life of independence. The ride there becomes the first of their problems. A new horse and cabriolet were purchased for the trip, but that was their first mistake. "The rain fell aslant, coming at their faces so that the top of the carriage did little good in sheltering them from it" (55). Monroe, Ada's father, had no idea on how to get to Cold Mountain, and "At each fork, Monroe simply guessed at the route they ought to take" (55). Ada's life in Charleston was one of aristocracy. She enjoyed balls, parties, and suitors, none of which helped her in any way at Black Cove. Ruby comments that
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"Ada told Ruby that she envied her knowledge of how the world runs" (137). Ruby also teaches Ada about home remedies and new ways of doing things around the house.


Ada learns from Ruby about the nature of the world. "You commence by trying to see what likes what, Ruby said. Which Ada interpreted to mean, Observe and understand the workings of affinity in nature" (138). Slowly Ada learns how to run the farm and live off its offerings. She begins to see things that she might not have noticed before. As a heron flies over her head she wonders if the sighting is "A blessing? A warning beacon? Picket of the spirit world?" (193). She jots down the incident in her journal, drawing pictures of the bird and maybe other associated objects. She even says to herself "I am living a life now where I keep account of the doings of particular birds" (239). She is observing, and learning from, nature in its purest forms.


It is easily seen that Ada acquires something of an understanding of nature in its purest forms. She is no longer afraid to do things that might seem 'unladylike'. Ruby dangled her feet over the edge of the hayloft. Ada had never known a grown woman to do that, but "Ruby looked at her with some amusement, as if to say, I can do this because I have never been proper, and you can do it because you have recently quit being so" (288). The way Ada draws and

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