The old man that everyone knew had always been an old man. When we were younger and he middle-aged, he looked distinguished, carrying and dressing himself with the care and formality of someone older, or from an older time. His hair was thinning in front but thick and wavy in the back and sides, liberally greased. A cragged face, framed by beard and eyebrows of dense curls. Slightly hunched. Muscular from a more active youth, but since I remember him his body always encased in stiff suits more suited to a bank than a mill. The mill – and indeed, effectively, the town – had always been in his family, but he had shown steadily diminishing interest in both the trappings and responsibilities that went along with it. What came out instead over time was contempt – for the backwoods town it was his misfortune to have been born to. He escaped regularly on business trips, though people at the mill rarely seemed to know where or why. More family stories. They fluttered down Main Street like wrappers tossed from passing cars. [p. 22]