Trash

Trash

by

Andy Mulligan

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Olivia Weston (Sister Olivia) Character Analysis

A kindhearted 22-year-old British volunteer at the Pascal Aguila Mission School on the Behala landfill. Olivia originally travelled to the city in which the story is set to go surfing, but she ultimately decided to stay and help out at the school. The children living in Behala steal Olivia’s heart, and she’s particularly fond of a young orphan nicknamed Rat. However, Rat and two other boys from the landfill, Raphael and Gardo, put Olivia in grave danger when they dupe her into taking Gardo to Colva Prison. They do so in order to meet a political prisoner named Gabriel Olondriz who was jailed by a corrupt politician named Senator Zapanta. Olivia is distraught after witnessing the squalor of the prison, which is stacked full of starving people in tiny cages, many of whom are young children. Olivia is arrested by the police after her visit to the prison, but her father (who is wealthy and well-connected) sends a man from the British Embassy to negotiate for her release. Despite the risks Olivia faced, she’s ultimately glad that the boys tricked her. Olivia feels that she learned many things from her exposure to Behala and Colva Prison that she couldn’t have learned at university, and she says that she left a piece of her heart behind when she left the country after her release.

Olivia Weston (Sister Olivia) Quotes in Trash

The Trash quotes below are all either spoken by Olivia Weston (Sister Olivia) or refer to Olivia Weston (Sister Olivia) . For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Childhood, Poverty, and Injustice Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Ember edition of Trash published in 2011.
Part 1: Chapter 5 Quotes

Ten thousand is a lot of money!

Page Number: 38
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 3: Chapter 1 Quotes

Little Jun had me wrapped around his little finger in about two days, and I was forever giving him little bits of food, and little bits of money. I don’t know how else a boy like that survives.

Related Characters: Olivia Weston (Sister Olivia) (speaker), Rat / Jun / Jun-Jun
Page Number: 84
Explanation and Analysis:

When one of their number is hurt, everyone feels the wound.

Page Number: 85
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 3: Chapter 3 Quotes

Behala also makes you want to weep, because it looks like an awful punishment that will never end – and if you have any imagination, you can see the child and what he is doomed to do for the rest of his life. When you see the old man, too weak to work, propped in a chair outside his shack, you think, That is Raphael in forty years. What could possibly change? These children are doomed to breathe the stink all day, all night, sifting the effluent of the city. Rats and children, children and rats, and you sometimes think they have pretty much the same life.

Related Symbols: Trash
Page Number: 92
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 3: Chapter 4 Quotes

They’re poor. They do many things.

Related Characters: Gardo (speaker), Olivia Weston (Sister Olivia) , Gabriel Olondriz
Page Number: 104
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 3: Chapter 5 Quotes

What matters is that forty years ago I came upon information that Senator Zapanta had spirited away thirty million dollars of international aid money […] But no schools or hospitals were ever built, and the city stayed poor.

Page Number: 104
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 3: Chapter 7 Quotes

I had so much evidence. Unfortunately for me, I was naïve. My office was raided. The same night there was a terrible fire at my house. I was away but both my maid and my driver were killed in it. And every scrap of evidence went up in smoke.

Page Number: 104
Explanation and Analysis:
Part 3: Chapter 10 Quotes

I learned perhaps more than any university could ever teach me.

Page Number: 149
Explanation and Analysis:
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Trash PDF

Olivia Weston (Sister Olivia) Character Timeline in Trash

The timeline below shows where the character Olivia Weston (Sister Olivia) appears in Trash. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part 2: Chapter 1
Childhood, Poverty, and Injustice Theme Icon
Intelligence, Education, and Street Smarts Theme Icon
Father Juilliard explains that the house mother, Sister Olivia, is actually—and foolishly—more involved in Raphael’s tale. One Thursday, a thin and ashy Jun offers... (full context)
Childhood, Poverty, and Injustice Theme Icon
Intelligence, Education, and Street Smarts Theme Icon
...hands make Father Juilliard “wince.” Juilliard has grown very fond of Jun, as has Sister Olivia. Olivia wants to adopt Jun, but foreigners usually can’t do so—this saddens Father Juilliard because... (full context)
Part 3: Chapter 1
Childhood, Poverty, and Injustice Theme Icon
Intelligence, Education, and Street Smarts Theme Icon
Olivia Weston, the 22-year-old house-mother at the Mission School, says she also has a part in... (full context)
Community, Loyalty, and Solidarity Theme Icon
Intelligence, Education, and Street Smarts Theme Icon
...day after Raphael returns from the police station, Jun brings him and Gardo to visit Olivia. When Raphael arrived at Behala, bloody and beaten, the whole neighborhood came out because when... (full context)
Childhood, Poverty, and Injustice Theme Icon
Olivia says that her vanity allowed the boys to manipulate her. She takes Gardo alone with... (full context)
Part 3: Chapter 2
Intelligence, Education, and Street Smarts Theme Icon
...says that had he known what the boys were up to, he would have warned Olivia that it was a “scam.” He hates to say it, but the children in Behala... (full context)
Part 3: Chapter 3
Childhood, Poverty, and Injustice Theme Icon
Community, Loyalty, and Solidarity Theme Icon
The taxi drives Olivia and Gardo to a “squalid” part of the city, even more so than Behala. Still,... (full context)
Childhood, Poverty, and Injustice Theme Icon
Corruption, Power, and Theft Theme Icon
...a long wait, a friendly man named Mr. Oliva comes in. He’s immediately charmed by Olivia immediately and he thanks her for volunteering in their poor city. Mr. Oliva suggests that... (full context)
Part 3: Chapter 4
Childhood, Poverty, and Injustice Theme Icon
In Colva Prison, Olivia is shocked to see a maze of small cages stacked on top of one another... (full context)
Part 3: Chapter 5
Corruption, Power, and Theft Theme Icon
A frail Gabriel Olondriz—who looks to be on the brink of death—greets Olivia, happy for the company. Olivia is confused that he doesn’t greet Gardo, who freezes and... (full context)
Part 3: Chapter 6
Community, Loyalty, and Solidarity Theme Icon
In the present day, Gardo says that he’s sorry about tricking Olivia. Rat wanted to confide in Olivia, but Gardo refused, and for that he’s sorry. Gardo... (full context)
Part 3: Chapter 7
Corruption, Power, and Theft Theme Icon
Back at Colva Prison, Olivia is confused about how so much money could disappear. Gabriel Olondriz explains that this can... (full context)
Childhood, Poverty, and Injustice Theme Icon
Corruption, Power, and Theft Theme Icon
...“luminous,” and he takes Gardo’s hands. Olondriz knows Gardo is a dumpsite boy because, like Olivia, he’s volunteered with them—he knows that even under clean clothes, the smell never goes away.... (full context)
Part 3: Chapter 8
Childhood, Poverty, and Injustice Theme Icon
Community, Loyalty, and Solidarity Theme Icon
In the present, Raphael apologizes to Olivia: he hopes to see her again and to thank her in person. Meanwhile, Raphael and... (full context)
Childhood, Poverty, and Injustice Theme Icon
Corruption, Power, and Theft Theme Icon
Community, Loyalty, and Solidarity Theme Icon
Intelligence, Education, and Street Smarts Theme Icon
...out a metal box containing a “fortune” of 2,326 pesos: he’s been charming people like Olivia out of money and saving by not eating. Rat isn’t from Behala—he came from Sampalo... (full context)
Part 3: Chapter 10
Corruption, Power, and Theft Theme Icon
Intelligence, Education, and Street Smarts Theme Icon
...that he’ll bring it to Gardo later. Outside the prison, Gardo explains what transpired to Olivia and he warns her that things are getting dangerous, for her too. (full context)
Corruption, Power, and Theft Theme Icon
Intelligence, Education, and Street Smarts Theme Icon
The next morning, Gabriel Olondriz dies peacefully in prison. Olivia assumes that Marco realized the Bible was valuable. She doesn’t know what happened next because... (full context)