card was inspired by my dear friend Jan McColl. We were both fearful
flyers and were always on the lookout for cards and gifts for each
other with airplane themes. For Christmas one year, she gave me this
bright red musicial ceramic airplane. The only difference between
the airplane I painted and the airplane she gave me is that the pilot
of the airplane she gave me was a teddy bear. That of course was in
the years I refer to as "BB" (Before Bichons).
In 1990, Jan valiantly battled a recurrence of melanoma. When it became
evident that she would not survive, I was encouraged to consider the
companionship of a furry friend to help me cope with the profound
loss of Jan's friendship. Jan witnessed my research of "the perfect
dog" and gave her stamp of approval (a giggle) when I showed
her the only photo I'd ever seen of a Bichon Frisé, from Mordecai
Siegal's book "A Dog for the Kids".
Jan passed away on January 6, 1991, just two months before our first
Bichon Frisé (Max) became a member of the family. Jan joined
the angels and is now flying high, free from fear and pain. And that
little "frou-frou dog", whose looks both of us doubted were
quite right for the name MAX, changed my life forever.