The Inheritance of Loss

The Inheritance of Loss


Kiran Desai

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The Inheritance of Loss: Chapter 50 Summary & Analysis

Biju is told that there are no buses to Kalimpong, as the political situation has worsened. He is told to go to Panitunk and beg the GNLF men to take him. Biju waits there for four days until a GNLF jeep finally leaves. Biju pays five American dollars (rather than an “extortionary amount”) because the men have never seen American money.
Biju takes advantage of the global bias towards Western countries and money, as he is able to get a seat on the bus by tricking the men into accepting a smaller amount of American dollars rather than a larger amount of rupees.
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Biju gets a seat and straps his luggage to the top of the car. They twist up the mountains in the jeep. Biju remembers how the road tilts and hangs on to the jeep’s frame. He had forgotten how close death is here. Yet Biju also sees how good it will be for him and the cook not to have their hearts in two places.
Biju provides a poetic explanation of why he doesn’t feel like he belonged in America—his heart was divided between America and his care for his father back in Kalimpong, arguing that family is often what constitutes home.
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