Edie's father has just crashed into the milk float and the street is awash, but sixteen year old Edie only has eyes for the postman and the white envelope with her name on it that he's about to deliver.
It's a letter from Ricky, and with it the course of her life is about to change.
On the day of the party, Edie spend hours getting ready.
She paints her nails, puts her hair up, applies eye shadow, mascara, and lipstick.
She looks like a princess, but the evening doesn't quite go according to plan - until the very last dance.
At sixteen Edie knows that her mother is charming and beautiful - and that her father, clumsy, quiet Vic, is loving, gentle, sometimes detached.
And she knows that she's in love with Ricky, even if her parents don't approve.
But one autumn evening when Vic fails to return home from work, Edie's world is turned upside-down, the certainties of her childhood destroyed in one terrible moment.
For twenty years Edie agonzies over the truth.
What really happened to her father? What became of her lost teenage love? When her mother dies and she returns to the family home to sift through her childhood belongings, she is faced with her unresolved past, and makes a dangerous attempt to recapture it.
Edie is madly in love with Ricky and spends every waking moment thinking about him.
But when her father marches into her bedroom without knocking and catches them in a moment of passion, her mood suddenly changes and all that overwhelming teenage desire begins to drain away.
Edie's father has always been a quiet man; shy, even a bit hopeless.
But when he goes to work and doesn't come back, her whole world is turned upside down, and where does Ricky fit in to it?
More than twenty years after her father's disappearance, the death of their mother brings Edie and her sisters back together to sift through the family's belongings.
Edie rediscovers a box of love letters from her old flame, Ricky, but it is another piece of paper, written in a hand she suddenly recognises, that brings about a shocking revelation.
Edie decides to revisit her past.
First her childhood home, then the bridge where her father died and all her childhood certainties ended in one terrible moment.
Finally, she finds herself irresistibly drawn to the house where Ricky, her boyfriend from over twenty years ago, used to live.
Edie arranges to meet Ricky in a pub.
They haven't been lovers for over twenty years.
But neither thoughts of her husband and children, nor of her dead mother in the Chapel of Rest, can deter Edie from making a passionate and desperate attempt to recapture the past.
In a highly emotional state, Edie has slept with Ricky, her boyfriend from twenty years ago.
Now her husband and children have arrived for her mother's funeral and she has to decide if she's going to confess.
After 20 years, Edie's past catches up with her at her mother's funeral.