Natalie remembers standing in front of the house, boxes piled up around her on the walkway.
Behind her, her father supervises the movers closely. Their furniture has made it this far without incurring damage and he is determined to maintain the status quo. Her mother stands beside her, weary and seemingly enveloped by the silence that surrounds their new home. Silence, this degree of it, is not something Natalie is used to, but she loves it for its newness and the promises it holds. Things will happen in this house; things which will stand out from what has come before.
“Well, at least the neighbours will be quiet,” her mother says, looking at the short, green hedge on the property line with vague distaste.
It is at this moment that Natalie realizes this will be the house she thinks of whenever she thinks of home.
( The saddest and most profound gravestone in the cemetery belongs to Esther and Lily and Mary )
To the various permutations of the O'Brien family. Who shared their house and their history with an impressionable girl, and especially to Lesley O'Brien, who was awesome and witty to the end.