I met Mickey and Jane one sunny Sunday afternoon on a dare. A friend and I had gone out for a few errands, and he bet that he could find the home of one of his favorite authors. I doubted him, so the bet was on. Well, he was right, and we carefully drove down Mickey's driveway, not intending on bothering them. But much to my surprise, Mickey was sitting out on his deck, and waved to us to stop. I was sure he was going to be very upset with us for bothering him, and I got out of my car with intense trepidation. When we introduced ourselves, our apologies were meet with great kindness and an invitation to stay and chat for a bit.
That afternoon was truly spellbinding! Like Mickey, I had been a pilot for years, and as we shared our love of flying and many other things, I fell in love - with his wit and charm, his laugh, and especially his stunning blue eyes. Before I knew it, we had talked the afternoon away, and Jane came out to remind him about a dinner engagement. We all chatted for a bit, and she is as lovely and gracious to strangers as Mickey.
I regret not visiting again, but I will always treasure that golden afternoon. My heart goes out to Jane and all of Mickey's family for their great loss. He will be missed by so many, not just for his delightful writing, but for being the splendid and complex man behind the pen.