“To Build a Fire” and “The Johnstown Flood” are two similar and two different stories at the same time.They are easy to read and can grab reader’s attention very quickly.Two main characters in these stories, try to fight for their life, but only one survives.
There are a lot of similarities and differences between those two stories and after seeing them we can understand the story much better. Both Man and Gertrude are trying to fight for their lives. They both have equal chance to die only if they are going to give up.
Also these two stories show how powerful the Nature can be against us, humans, and how weak we can be against it. We can lose our friends and family if we will give up or stop trying to live, but all different things can happen throughout time. Also these two stories are stories of survival and how keep trying to do anything to stay alive. So these two stories are very close, but they have a lot of differences too. As the story “To Build a Fire” begins we can clearly see how stupid the man was.
He did not listen to the advice his friends gave him, so he stayed alone. In “The Johnstown Flood” we see different scene. Gertrude started getting out of the house alone but as she floated on the mattress the millworker agreed to help her after she called. So he swam to her risking his life, but he made it. Gertrude survives, but the man does not. Also Gertrude tried to follow some kind of instructions of how to get out of the house, float on the mattress, and stay alive. The man first of all he sets up the fire under a tree full of snow.
Second of all he does not follow any kind of instructions of logics for setting up the fire. I think that Gertrude was able to survive, because she tried with all her might to live and not give up, but without millworker’s help she would have been dead too. The man could not do all that things, because he traveled alone, did not listen to his friends’ advice, and gave up. If he went back when he saw the danger was coming he would survive too, but he refused, he thought he can do it all by himself.
Middle ages, inexperienced, careless, these traits cannot be used when traveling in Yukon. It was very hard for them to survive in that kind of situations, but one of the main reasons Gertrude survived and the man did not is she never gave up and did anything to keep living. One of the most reasons the man was not able to survive is he traveled alone. He had a choice, but he wanted to do it all by himself. So I think we need to learn from Gertrude that we should not give up at anytime even if the Nature is unexpectedly strikes us.