With a lot of publicity being given to former President George W. Bush this week, on the release of his presidential memoirs, Decision Points, I thought it nothing but appropriate that I share my personal encounter with the other former President Bush—George H. W. Bush. It occurred in the fall of 2000.
I’ll try to make this as brief as possible, but a bit of background is needed.
One morning, Stan and I drove to College Station to visit the George Bush Library. As long as I’ve been old enough to notice, I’ve admired George and Barbara Bush for a number of reasons. One, I think they are modest and down-to-earth people—the kind of folks a country girl like me could share a pot of pinto beans with and feel totally at ease. But more important, I always appreciated the fact that Mr. Bush displayed great leadership skills during his presidency. As former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney said, “When George Bush was president of the United States, every single head of government in the world knew they were dealing with a genuine leader.”
The George Bush Library impressed me so much that I came home and wrote about it, and on September 24, 2000 the piece was published in The Dallas Morning News.
A few days later, I walked to the mailbox and discovered a package addressed to me. The return address was from my then-editor at The Dallas Morning News, so I thought nothing of it, except I noticed it was a lot bigger than the normal envelope that Bob usually sent my tearsheets in, following publication.
I opened the bulky package and inside was yet another package, addressed to me, in care of The Dallas Morning News—with a return address from the "Office of George Bush."
My mouth fell open. I think my knees even shook a little. What on earth was going on?