Monday, September 25, 2006

Is that your child or are you a kidnapper?!

Last week I went for lunch with a friend and her 2 year old daughter. I don't see her very much so her daughter wouldn't have remembered me as I last saw her about a year before, but we had a very nice time. Towards the end of lunch it became very obvious that a nappy change was in order, but mummy had lost the baby wipes somewhere between the London Aquarium and meeting me. Baby wipes are crucial when dealing with babies' bottoms, tissue just doesn't cut it. So I piped up helpfully, "I'll watch the little'un if you want to nip out and get some more" (this is from a shop 2 doors down so I didn't envisage she'd be very long). Everything was fine to begin with. Little'un seemed quite happy with me, and we were playing with a jigsaw. Then someone came to clear the table. When faced with yet another stranger, little'un looks very perturbed and pipes up "I want my mummy!" and looks at me like I'm a complete stranger. Louder "I want my MUMMY!!!" and tears weren't far off. The lady clearing the table looks worried and frowns at me. It's all I can do not to say "hey, I'm a helpful librarian not a childnapper. Back off lady!" but I just tried to smile reassuringly and attempted to distract the child from getting me arrested. I am sure this made me look even more suspicious.

The minutes until mummy came back with the wipes were interminable. I was starting to think she wasn't coming back. There was me, stuck with a very smelly bottomed child, a jigsaw that was rapidly losing its appeal, and half of the shop staff discussing whether to call the police or not. When mummy finally showed up again I could have cried, never mind the baby!

That'll teach me to be helpful. Probably.

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