We’d gotten fan mail before, just a few things that found their way to us via the school’s address. Thankfully all of it had been benign, if sometimes a little odd. So I didn’t think that much of it that November when I was called to the high school office to pick up a letter that had showed up for us.
This was one of the benefits of living in a small town (or one of the benefits of name recognition by this point), that instead of marking it return to sender, they actually knew where we still were and had no trouble getting it to us.
Inside was a typed letter that ran for several pages, along with a cassette tape of an album called Touch of the Child’s Hand.
*shrug* Okay. Interesting…
Honestly, the first thing that struck me after reading it was that here was someone who actually cared about animation and the show. This wasn’t someone writing to us solely out of some weird attraction to our fleeting celebrity status, or wanting something from us. He’d already exchanged letters with some of the Tiny Toons voice actors, and one of the songs on his album, “Sincerely, Babs,” was inspired by his correspondence with voice actress Tress MacNeille.
The others didn’t seem all that interested, so I wrote back, and we became pen pals. We talked about the show, we asked each other trivia questions, and of course as time went on we talked about what else we liked, and where we lived, and our friends and families, and how our day had been. Years passed, and without thinking of it, without even noticing each stage we passed, we moved from being pen pals, to friends, to… something more, something that felt closer and deeper than either of us had ever expected.
We first met in person when he flew in to attend my high school graduation. That fall, he came back to spend Thanksgiving with my family, and brought an engagement ring with him.
Reader, I married him. We’ll celebrate 25 years this June.
We were married on a June morning, a small outdoor wedding at my parents’ home, under a tent rented at the absolute last minute when we woke up to the sound of rain. (Thus began a grudge against the Old Farmer’s Almanac that I carry to this day.)
We kept things simple and elegant, but in the end we couldn’t resist one little nod to the beginning of our relationship, on the invitations for the rehearsal dinner.