Francesca JohnsonとRobert Kincaidは、Francescaの家族が留守にしている間に出会って、2日目の夜には恋に落ちました。2人は精神的にも肉体的にも完全に結ばれます。しかし、Robert KincaidはFrancescaの家族が帰ってくる日に去って行きました。そして夫も死に、Robert Kincaidの行き先も分からなくなり、Francescaは隠遁し、思い出の橋によく姿を現すようになりました。そんなある日、荷物が届きます。本章の最後です。

Ashes (13)

At the end of her sixty-seventh birthday, when the rain had stopped, Francesca put the manila envelope in the bottom drawer of the rolltop desk. She had decided to keep it in her safe deposit box at the bank after Richard died but brought it home for a few days each year at this time. The lid on the walnut chest was shut on the cameras, and the chest was placed on the closet shelf in her bedroom.
Earlier in the afternoon, she had visited Roseman Bridge. Now she walked out on the porch, dried off the swing with a towel, and sat down. It was cold, but she would stay for a few minutes, as she always did. Then she walked to the yard gate and stood. Then to the head of the lane. Twenty-two years later, she could see him stepping from his truck in the late afternoon, trying to find his way, she could see harry bouncing toward the country road, then stopping, and Robert Kincaid standing on the running board, looking back up the lane.


解説:

At the end of her sixty-seventh birthday, when the rain had stopped, Francesca put the manila envelope in the bottom drawer of the rolltop desk.
■manila envelope:書類を入れ、その蓋に紐が付いていて、くるくると蓋を閉めたり、開けたりできる封筒。
■rolltop desk:たたみ込み式ふた付き机。the rolltop deskとthe を使っているのは、アメリカの家庭では大抵1家に1台備え付けられているので、どのrolltop deskを指すか分かるという意識から。the refrigerator / the microwave oven 等と同じ扱い。

She had decided to keep it in her safe deposit box(貸し金庫)at the bank after Richard died but brought it home for a few days each year at this time. The lid(ふた) on the walnut(クルミ) chest was shut on the cameras, and the chest was placed on the closet shelf in her bedroom.
Earlier in the afternoon, she had visited Roseman Bridge. Now she walked out on the porch, dried off the swing with a towel, and sat down. It was cold, but she would stay for a few minutes, as she always did. Then she walked to the yard gate and stood. Then to the head of the lane.

Twenty-two years later, she could see him stepping from his truck in the late afternoon, trying to find his way, she could see Harry bouncing(音を立てて走る) toward the country road, then stopping, and Robert Kincaid standing on the running board(昔の自動車のドアの下の踏み板), looking back up the lane.
■Twenty-two years later:(Robert Kincaidと始めて会って)22年後でも
■up the lane:小道をずーと行ったところに