• At last Austria was free from Hitler's grip and 17 year-old Meryl couldn't wait to go home. She remembered that anticipation that had been so strong, she'd been able to run most of the way back to her small Austrian town from her family's camp in the mountains. She was one of the first to arrive. She parted two pine saplings and came to an abrupt stop.
    As far as Meryl could see, there was destruction.
    In disbelief, she walked the littered streets. Stumbling over debris every now and again, but not caring as her steps became faster. Finally she broke into a run and spied the only thing left on what used to be her parents property. The mailbox had survived.... Meryl knelt in the center of the wreckage that was once a place she called home and wept. In the ashes and debris, she stayed, crying and not caring who knew of her lament.

    At last her mother and her twin younger brothers came and offered comfort. The 12 year-old twins were too shocked to say much, but her mother kept saying how she should have prepared them for how it would be. Finally Garth, the more pretentious of Meryl's brothers said, "Do you think we have any mail?"
    Meryl snapped, "What does it matter! We have no home." Then she wept. Letting her tears flow freely and fall on her ash-covered skirt.