Showing a group of visitors around the Chiesa di San Gottardo the other day, with the children close at my heels. A kind-looking German woman, ready to be charmed, asks in halting Italian: "And are these your grandchildren, dear?"
Ouch! Perhaps I should just give in gracefully and let the hairdresser low-light my grey out of existence after all? Then I could at least pretend I'm not old enough to be my kids' grandmother.
AJ cuddles Mama in the summer-sunshine garden. AJ pinches more than an inch and remarks: "Mama, you feel like a teddy bear".
Oh poop! Where are the bathroom scales? Too much pasta, polenta and parmiggiano, and not enough puff-puff up the hill. Soon-turning-50 panic settling in to a spot just above the spare tyre.
But then, just last evening...
The whole family is poring over a satirical cartoon in The Economist, and Pappa is trying to teach the children (and Mama, I suspect) something about debt, credit and the value of money in your pocket, when B. flicks to an ad on the back cover:
Pappa, interest piqued by a pair of long legs and some high-end luggage, asks: "Who's that?"
B., my 5 year-old angel, replies: "It's ... Mama!"
Oh, thank-you, thank-you, thank-you, thank-you! Now I know what daughters are for.