For part of April and part of May in the splendid year of 2011 one of the finest, most entertaining intervals of my life transpired. By some kind of outrageous good luck I got the job of looking after Mabel all day long for several weeks when she was around eight months old. This occurred at the chronological instant when both her parents had exhausted their parent-leave allotments, and both needed to be back at their jobs. How fortune smiled over those weeks of baby-minding. Literature tends to teach that such extraordinary times in a person's life can only be recognized after the fact. But no, in April and May of 2011 my awareness of my own elation was fully operational. What other grandfather ever had such a clever, good-natured baby to take care of?