Dear Michael Bond,
You lived quite a long life and hopefully a happy one given that your funny little bear brought the happy to millions. Even a fairly awful Hollywood adaptation of Paddington’s stories couldn’t ruin his reputation or yours. Philip Pullman must be envious of that.
Who’d have thought that a character found on a London train station platform could become so much larger than life? Who apart from Oscar Wilde who came up with the notion sixty or seventy years ahead of you? I see you dropped the handbag motif: the replacement marmalade sandwiches were a touch of genius.
Paddington Bear has been a part of my life for so very long that I am completely unable to recall whether he entered it via the books first or the TV version (oh Michael Hordern and that velveteen voice). Both became staples of my childhood. No, he never quite surpassed Pooh as my favourite literary bear but it was neck and neck for a while.
And now you’ve gone back to your own family in the sky, hopefully well stocked up on marmalade sarnies in case there is a shortage in heaven. Thank you for the mild mischief and the fact that your creation finally convinced me welly boots weren’t stupid after all.
Please look after this fan, thank you.