Agnes came every summer on the train from Milwaukee, wearing silk blouses, costume jewelry and too much perfume. Married twice with no children of her own, she doted on her four nieces. Agnes brought us glamour; evening sweaters, cobwebby nylon stockings, after-bath lotion– things too sophisticated for young teenagers. I often thought her gifts odd, but looking back, I think she knew exactly what she was doing by nourishing our adolescent daydreams. Agnes was small-boned and dark-haired with beautiful violet eyes.