Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Monochrome Dinnertime

Monday night was a special occasion for the parents of Mabel Watson Payne and that meant that I got the treat of babysitting while they got dressed up and went out together to celebrate their wedding anniversary. Witty conversation no doubt flowed just as freely between Mamma and Daddy off on their own as it did between Mabel and me all through her eating-time and all through her bath-time and all through the numerous rituals of getting ready for bed. The actual going-to-sleep happened a good deal later than I hear is usual, simply because there was so much to say. At one point I resorted to singing Rockabye Baby but soon gathered that nobody else sings that banal song at bedtime and therefore it offered all the charm and interest of novelty. Mabel kept exclaiming Baby Treetop! and twisting around to point at the ceiling, so the magic didn't even begin to work until I dropped the lyrics and stripped the lullaby down to a loud and insistent humming of the melody.