Short summary - The Caretaker - Harold Pinter

British literature summaries -

Short summary - The Caretaker
Harold Pinter

A room littered with junk. In the back wall there is a window curtained with burlap. A bucket is suspended from the ceiling. There are two iron beds in the room, on one of which Mick sits. Hearing that the front door slams, he gets up and slowly leaves. Aston and Davis enter. Davis was very tired and excited: he was fired from the eatery where he worked, and in addition he was nearly beaten. Aston, who accidentally went into an eatery that evening, literally saved him and brought him to his place. Davis is very grateful to him for this. All the time, Davis recalls how the aliens sat quietly, while he, the Englishman, had nowhere to stumble over and had to work without rest. When Davis was ordered to take out a bucket of slop, he broke out: it was not his job. Though he is a tramp, he is no worse than others and he has no less rights. He did not have time to pick up his bag from the eatery, she remained in the back room, and in it are all his things. Aston promises to somehow drop in there and bring Davis a bag. Davis asks if Aston has an extra pair of boots. Searching under the bed, Aston hands Davis his boots. He tries on, thinks out loud, finally decides that they do not suit him: he has a wide leg, and his shoes have a sharp toe, he does not go through them for a long time. After all, Davis needs to walk a lot in order to settle down somewhere. Aston offers Davis to stay with him until he settles in: there is a second bed in the room. Throughout the conversation, Aston repairs the fork of an old toaster. He says that he loves to work with his hands, that he is going to build a shed in the yard ... Having found out that Davis is tight with money, Aston gives him a couple of coins. Davis is waiting to get better, then he will go to Sidkap, where his documents are. About fifteen years ago, in the war, he gave them to his friend for preservation, and he still hasn’t taken them. With documents it will be much easier for him, because everything is written about him: who he is and where he comes from, otherwise he lives under a false name. His real name is Mac Davis, and everyone knows him as Bernard Jenkins. Suddenly Davis notices a bucket upstairs. Aston explains that the roof is leaking. Davis asks for permission to lie on Aston's bed. Davis goes to bed. Aston continues to pick his fork. In the morning, Aston wakes Davis, says that he made a noise at night: he moaned, muttered. Davis does not believe. Dreams to him, like Aston, never dream, why would he mumble? Davis suggests that rustled niggers living in the neighborhood. Aston is about to leave. Davis thinks he should leave too, but Aston lets him stay and gives the keys to the room and the front door. Davis wants to go to Wembley later: once people were needed there, maybe he could get along. They want to get rid of foreigners there so that some English can pour tea, so he hopes that they will take it. Aston leaves. After waiting a few minutes, Davis begins to rummage around in the rubbish heaps piled in the room. He does not notice how Mick enters, who is watching him, then grabs his hand and twists it behind his back. Mick looks around the room, preventing Davis from rising, then asks him: «What are we playing?» He asks Davis what his name is. «Jenkins,» Davis says. Mick says that Davis is like two drops of water like his uncle’s brother. His name is Sid. Mick could never understand how this Sid comes from his uncle’s brother. He often thought that the opposite was true, that is, that his uncle was Sid's brother. In the end, Sid married a Chinese woman and left for Jamaica. Mick asks how Davis liked his room. Davis wonders: Is this Mick's room? Mick asks several times how Davis slept, and several times asks which bed he slept on. Davis tries to pull his pants off the hanger, but Mick doesn't let him do it. Mick says that the bed Davis slept on is his bed, and the second is his mother's bed. He calls Davis a crook. He says that he could receive three hundred and fifty pounds a year for his apartment. If you add furniture and equipment, taxes, heating and water to this, you get eight hundred and ninety pounds. He offers Davis to sign a contract for renting an apartment, otherwise he will hand Davis to the police and put him in violation of the inviolability of the home, vagrancy, robbery in broad daylight, etc. He asks Davis what bank he has an account with. Aston enters. Mick turns around and drops his Davis pants. Aston walks over to his bed, puts a bag on it and starts fixing the toaster again. A drop is dripping into a bucket on the ceiling. Everyone is raising their heads. Aston promises to tar the roof cracks. He says he brought Davis's bag, but Mick grabs it right away and doesn't want to give it to Davis. Everyone takes the bag from each other for a long time. Finally, Davis still manages to take it away. A drop falls into the bucket again. Everyone heads up again. Mick leaves. Davis asks Aston about Mick. Aston says that Mick is his brother, he works in the construction business, he has his own van. The house belongs to Mick, and Aston promised him to finish the entire floor so that there would be an apartment. Aston will build a barn in the courtyard, make a workshop in it, and then he will take up the apartment. Looking at the bag, Davis realizes that this is not his bag. Aston says that someone took his bag, so he got this one in a completely different place. Davis examines the clothes that lie in her, criticizes the shirts, but he likes the home jacket. Aston offers him to stay and look after the house. Davis had never been a watchman before and was afraid: suddenly he would go down to open the phone, and this would be the Scot who wanted to beat him in the eatery: he would hunt him down and come. And it was then that Davis nedobrob. track him down and come. And it was then that Davis nedobrob. track him down and come. And it was then that Davis nedobrob.


It's dark in the room. Davis enters and flips the switch several times, but the light does not come on. Davis stumbles in the dark, striking a match, but it quickly burns out. He drops the box and cannot find it in any way: someone took it. Davis goes forward, falls and screams. Then he gets up, walks again. Suddenly the vacuum cleaner starts buzzing. The vacuum cleaner slides on the floor behind Davis, he tries to slip away, but falls. A man with a vacuum cleaner - Mick. He says that he did spring cleaning, and since the outlet is faulty, he included the vacuum cleaner in the lamp holder. Turning off the vacuum cleaner, he again screwed the bulb into the cartridge, and the light ignited. Davis is offended: Mick plays him all the time. Mick treats Davis to a sandwich. He says that he is interested in his brother’s friends. Davis objects: they are not so friends with Aston, Davis can not figure it out. Mick complains that Aston does not like to work. Mick wants to take everything into his own hands and offers Davis to stay here as a watchman. Mick asks if Davis has recommendations. Davis replies that his recommendations, like other papers, are in Sidkal. As soon as it turns out, he certainly goes there, only good shoes are needed. Davis asks Mick to get his shoes.


Aston wakes Davis: the old man was going to Sidkap and asked to wake him. But the weather wasn’t hot again, and Davis didn’t sleep well: the rain was pouring right on his head, it was blowing from the window. But Aston does not want to close the window: the room is stuffy. Aston advises Davis to sleep with his feet to the window, then the rain does not fall on his head. Aston tells how he had something like hallucinations. He saw everything very clearly. And once he was taken to the hospital, and there the doctor said that he has a chance to recover, but for this he needs to do something with his brain. Aston was a minor, so permission from his mother was required. Aston hoped that his mother would not give consent for the operation, but she signed the paper. Aston tried to escape from the hospital, but he was caught. He resisted and did not want to lie down on the bed, then the doctors put clamps on his head when he stood, although this was not supposed to be done. Therefore, when Aston left the hospital, he could not walk, he was tormented by headaches and could not gather his thoughts. Gradually, he felt better, but he stopped communicating with people.

Two weeks later. Mick lies on the floor with a rolled carpet under his head and looks at the ceiling. Davis sits on a chair and argues that since water does not drip into a bucket, that means Aston has smeared tar gaps on the roof. He complains to Mick that Aston has completely stopped talking to him. Mick tells how he would like to furnish his house. Davis again complains about Aston. With Mick, it’s much easier for him: although Mick has oddities, with him, at least, everything is clear. Davis asks Mick to talk to Aston. Davis would have helped Mick tidy the house up if they had settled here together: he and Mick. Davis asks Mick where he now lives. Mick replies that he has a nice apartment, and invites Davis to come to him somehow to drink and listen to Tchaikovsky together. The front door slams. Mick gets up and leaves. Aston comes in with a big paper bag, in which are shoes for Davis. Davis says that they are not good for him, in addition they are without laces. Aston finds shoelaces under the bed, and Davis decides to still wear these shoes until he gets the others. If tomorrow is okay, he will go to them in Sidkal for his papers. At night, Davis groans in his sleep and stops Aston from sleeping. Aston wakes him up, but Davis scolds him for the mess in the house, for the cold, calls him crazy. Aston asks Davis to look for another place to live because they don’t get along, but Davis doesn’t want to go anywhere, he lives here, he was offered a job here and promised a salary, so let Aston look for another place for himself. Davis points a knife at Aston, but Aston is not afraid. He takes a bag of Davis, pushes his things there and drives Davis out. Davis is leaving. in addition, they are without shoelaces. Aston finds shoelaces under the bed, and Davis decides to still wear these shoes until he gets the others. If tomorrow is okay, he will go to them in Sidkal for his papers. At night, Davis groans in his sleep and stops Aston from sleeping. Aston wakes him up, but Davis scolds him for the mess in the house, for the cold, calls him crazy. Aston asks Davis to look for another place to live because they don’t get along, but Davis doesn’t want to go anywhere, he lives here, he was offered a job here and promised a salary, so let Aston look for another place for himself. Davis points a knife at Aston, but Aston is not afraid. He takes a bag of Davis, pushes his things there and drives Davis out. Davis is leaving. in addition, they are without shoelaces. Aston finds shoelaces under the bed, and Davis decides to still wear these shoes until he gets the others. If tomorrow is okay, he will go to them in Sidkal for his papers. At night, Davis groans in his sleep and stops Aston from sleeping. Aston wakes him up, but Davis scolds him for the mess in the house, for the cold, calls him crazy. Aston asks Davis to look for another place to live because they don’t get along, but Davis doesn’t want to go anywhere, he lives here, he was offered a job here and promised a salary, so let Aston look for another place for himself. Davis points a knife at Aston, but Aston is not afraid. He takes a bag of Davis, pushes his things there and drives Davis out. Davis is leaving. he will go to them in Sidkal for his papers. At night, Davis groans in his sleep and stops Aston from sleeping. Aston wakes him up, but Davis scolds him for the mess in the house, for the cold, calls him crazy. Aston asks Davis to look for another place to live because they don’t get along, but Davis doesn’t want to go anywhere, he lives here, he was offered a job here and promised a salary, so let Aston look for another place for himself. Davis points a knife at Aston, but Aston is not afraid. He takes a bag of Davis, pushes his things there and drives Davis out. Davis is leaving. he will go to them in Sidkal for his papers. At night, Davis groans in his sleep and stops Aston from sleeping. Aston wakes him up, but Davis scolds him for the mess in the house, for the cold, calls him crazy. Aston asks Davis to look for another place to live because they don’t get along, but Davis doesn’t want to go anywhere, he lives here, he was offered a job here and promised a salary, so let Aston look for another place for himself. Davis points a knife at Aston, but Aston is not afraid. He takes a bag of Davis, pushes his things there and drives Davis out. Davis is leaving. he was offered a job here and promised a salary, so let Aston look for other housing for himself. Davis points a knife at Aston, but Aston is not afraid. He takes a bag of Davis, pushes his things there and drives Davis out. Davis is leaving. he was offered a job here and promised a salary, so let Aston look for other housing for himself. Davis points a knife at Aston, but Aston is not afraid. He takes a bag of Davis, pushes his things there and drives Davis out. Davis is leaving.


Davis complains to Mik about Aston. He advises Mika to kick his brother out. Mick is discussing a room plan with Davis. He is ready to entrust the decoration of the rooms to Davis, if he is a first-class specialist in interior design. But Davis had never done anything like this in his life. Mick says that Davis tricked him: he called himself an experienced decorator. Davis objects: he did not claim to be a decorator at all. Mick calls him an imposter. Davis thinks that it was Aston who failed him, because he is crazy. Mick is offended: what right does Davis have to call his brother crazy? He decides to calculate Davis. Let Aston deal with this house himself, he, Mick, is full of other worries, and he does not care about Davis. Aston enters. The brothers look at each other and smile barely noticeable. Mick leaves. Davis is trying to make peace with Aston. He is ready to guard the house and help Aston build a barn. But Aston does not need Davis's help. Davis is ready to concede in everything to him, but Aston does not want Davis to stay in the house. Davis asks Aston not to chase him away. Aston is silent, turning to the window. Davis continues to beg Aston, but Aston doesn't answer.