Today I awoke to a world a little colder, more gray and less magical. Today I was forced to accept my childhood was gone because yesterday was the day Peter Pan died.
From my earliest memories I can recall the laughter and wonderment at watching a crazy alien from Ork turn the lives of a simple Milwaukee family upside down. Later, that same quirky alien made his home in Boulder Colorado and in living rooms across the country. Making us laugh and sometimes cry all the while being drawn to his childlike wonderment at the world around him.
This was only the beginning - later that same alien embarked on a journey that would bring us a Genie, a Doctor/Clown, a hilarious old woman and many many other wonderful, hilarious and even dramatic characters. I was always in awe of Robin Williams and his ability to turn any phrase or situation into an hour or more of the funniest things I'd ever heard. His amazing mind, comedic timing and ability to turn on a dime and be more profound and deep then anyone could imagine. He was my idol and in some small manner, my friend.
Years later when I was granted the miracle of finally meeting him, the energy radiating from him was almost palpable. Here was the man I had idolized for 30 yrs that I knew was bigger then life and a colossus, standing a mere 5'6" (2 inches shorter then me) and just as calm and gentle as someone you'd just met in church. I'll never forget the few short minutes I was provided to put my arm around my idol and finally be able to tell him how I had waited 30yrs for that moment and what a true honor it really was. How he seemed genuinely touched and wrote on an 8x10 of himself what an honor it was for him as well.
Peter Pan is gone now, Neverland is silent....the Genie and all his infinite wishes lost to the sands of time.
Goodbye Robin .... you'll never know the multitude of the lives you touched, the children you raised or the tears that are now shed for having lost such a wonderful gift of laughter.