Quickie today, just back from two presentation where the past came back and hit me. My eldest (twins, now getting ready for university) had a wonderful baby sitter when very very young, and this sitter, now a mother of four, had me to lunch after I visited her kids' school to talk about writing. Heartening to see that Anna hadn't really changed: I could see the college girl smiling out from behind the thirtysomething eyes. (A big relief to me, passage-of-time-wise -- I recently ran into a high-school buddy who looked ready for the knacker's yard.) And this touch of the past came after a visit to another school visit earlier this morning, where my twins' kindergarten teacher is on staff. For years we did our picture-book reading "Mrs McKrow style" with the book pointing away from the reader. What a fine teacher she was, patient and encouraging with what seemed like half of our downtown Toronto kindergarten who started the year with no English at all, and still making sure everyone's coat was done up. She said she remembered me pushing a stroller with my four kids in and around it, looking harrassed. Harrassed? I said. I was always trying for joyful and animated. She smiled. (Like Anna, she has been kindly treated by time, and it was easy to see the eager young thing she'd been.) Harrassed, she said. Tomorrow: zombies.