My name is Nate and I’m responsible for the landscape planning and the gardening crew at Hillside Museum. I’m a hard worker but things don’t always work out as I planned them. People tell me they like me because I’m a down to earth, humble kind of guy. What they don’t know is that my self confidence is at an all time low right now.
The 100 year anniversary of Hillside Museum is in one week and the grounds need to be in perfect shape. The whole town will be taking part in this celebration. Some are volunteering their time by working in the gardens, on the hiking trails, and around the grounds. The Program Director of the museum, Rennie, has told me my job is in jeopardy if the celebration preparation is not “up to her standards”. As you might imagine, we don't see eye to eye.
My Great Great Grandfather was the gardener at Hillside 100 years ago when it was a residence. This job has passed down in my family for four generations. If I blow this, it will be a disgrace to my family, and I can't let that happen. I try to keep a good balance of work and family in my life, because both are important to me. I live with, and take care of my mother, who has Alzheimer’s disease. Neither of my brothers will help, so it’s up to me to take care of her, and it is getting more difficult each year.
I’ve never told my family this, but I was in love once in college. She was the girl of my dreams and I thought we were meant to be together forever. But she rejected my marriage proposal and caused me to almost leave college. I will never put myself in that position again. You just can’t trust women.
So, I put all my efforts into developing my trade as a landscape architect and when I can, I work in the greenhouse with plant propagation. I’ve developed several new plant hybrids that I was planning to show off at the celebration next week. But, someone may be trying to sabotage my work and make me look bad. At least I think that is it. Or maybe my skills just aren’t that good after all.
And then there is this girl in a portrait that is hanging in the museum. I swear every time I walk in, her eyes follow me around the room. I can't help but wonder about her and what her life was like back then. The portrait is dated 1909, but she looks like she would fit in right here, right now. What a beauty.