Cherry reunites with her old Spencer classmates Gwen, Bertha, Josie, Vivian, and Mai Lee, when they all decide to take an apartment together in New York City, and work for the Visiting Nurse Service of New York. Greenwish Village is a far cry from Hilton, Illinois, and farm-raised Bertha is ready to mutiny when she tries to cook in their tiny kitchen. Assigned to a specific neighborhood, Cherry marvels at the many countries her patients come from--and is determined to resolve the loneliness of a few of them by having them all meet at an "Around the World" Dinner at the local settlement house. But who is the mysterious woman who lives in the Victorian mansion at the center of her district? Why hasn't she been seen by anyone in the past 18 years?