.who inspires an adulation just short of worship in everyone she meets...
whose voice on the printed page, is just like her voice in real life-and is there a harder thing to do than that?---what words work here?
The houses she decorated were both beautiful and delicious to stay in....the books she wrote were both hugely engaging AND beautifully written; it seems like everything I saw Norris do, I saw her bring her whole heart to. Is there anyone better to be around, than someone who brings their whole self to every minute? That quality also made her something as rare in New York city, as snow is in Arkansas: : a great listener.
The first time I met NCM, in Provincetown, she was supervising a house filled with her kids, her stepkids, the spouses, kids, and stepkids of her kids and her stepkids, their cousins, friends, wives..
(I also remember thinking "She's like: if Florence Henderson's character in "The Brady Bunch" was played by the goddess Athena.")
Everyone who's \ met her, in life or in her books, \will miss her . We'll miss her emotional generosity, wry humor, complete unvarnished and sometimes blunt truthtelling; the " wicked-little-Soth'n-girl-" giggle, and the gloriously Technicolor movie-stah-presence that was NCM.
She taught me to value qualities I had never valued before--as global as "femininity" and as specific as "neatness"--and I remember, every day, things she taught me without seeming to teach at all.
( I remember my friend Ann saying she had proofread "Cheap Diamonds" and had stayed late -without overtime- at her copyediting job, in order to read it again-this time for sheer pleasure.)
Norris's voice on the page has the same sideways melody as her real voice. Same quirky music and lightning flash insights. Go read the books, now. -Please.
To me, she will always be that gracious, gogeous, dignified, and just a bit rebellious belle, who brought more than a roomful of light, into every room she entered.