Paul Anthony Stewart Fan Encounters
Leslie's meeting with Paul Anthony Stewart -
When I read that Paul Anthony Stewart was going to be at the Grand Opening of Sears in the Eastridge Mall in Gastonia, NC on July 24, 1999, I wanted to go and meet him. I told my mother, and she was like, “Oh, yeah, right, we’re gonna go.” Now, she loves PAS, as do I. Days went by; I would mention it, and she would joke about it. Finally, Saturday, the 24th came. I asked once again, and she finally relented. LOL. We really had to hurry because PAS was signing from 1-4 PM and Gastonia is about a 2 ½ hour drive. I really wanted someone to go with us to share the experience, so I called a few relatives that love GL. Since it was very last minute, they all were busy or had plans that they couldn’t break. I called my best friend that I went to school with. She is about as obsessed with GL as I am. She told me that she was supposed to take her l2 year old brother and 5 year old sister to the movies that afternoon, but said that she would call them and ask if it would be alright to take them later that night. She called me back a little later, and she was going with us. I found a couple of magazine with great pics of PAS in them, and Mom and I went to pick her and her fiancé, who was at her house because he was going with her to movies, up. My friend’s 15-year-old sister was sitting on the couch, watching TV and talking on the phone when I walked in the door. As I was waiting for my friend to finish getting ready, it occurred to me that I hadn’t even thought that her sister might want to go. I asked her and she said that she would love to go. My friend grabbed a magazine, and we all were on our way. It was now about 12:30. Now, like I said, it’s a 2, close to 3 hour drive. My mother can be a speed demon at times. We arrived in Gastonia at 2:00. LOL. Going into Sears, we quickly located Women’s Apparel by the very long line that wound around the corner, out off the store, and down by several other stores inside the mall. The line slowly inched forward. The five of us talked and laughed. We teased my friend’s fiancé about having to come with us to keep her from attacking the poor man. LOL. Soon we got close enough to see PAS sitting at the table, signing, talking, laughing, and taking pics. We handed the camera to my friend’s sister, since is very tall and could take some pics of him over everyone’s heads. Finally, mom and I got to the front of the line. PAS looked up and smiled at us and motioned for us over to the table. He asked my name and signed a pic to me. Looking at my mom, he asked her name. She was so shook up that she started to say that her name was Leslie. Quickly, correcting herself, she said Becky. He looked up from her pic, and gave her a huge grin. He teased, “You started to say “Leslie”, didn’t you?” Mom grinned and admitted that she did. LOL. We handed him the mags and he signed them, too. While he was signing, he asked how long we had waited in line and where we were from. I told him that we had waited 90 minutes, and that we were a couple of hours away. He stood up so that we could have our pic taken. He put one arm around my shoulder and one arm around my mom’s and my friend’s sister took the pic. After thanking him, we stood off to the side to watch my friend. She told him that she was with us, and he looked over and gave us another grin. After he had autographed a pic and her magazine, she did something that I was totally shocked at. She said, “I have a favor to ask of you.” He grinned and asked what. She looked over at me, and I was like OMG, don’t you dare. She said, “Would you mind if my friend and I sit on your lap and have our pictured taken?” I just about died! Then, what he did made me want to die again. LOL. His chair shot back and he patted both his knees, and told us to have a seat. I was red in the face, and he knew it. He said, “Come on, Leslie.” He was grinning and my friend was trying to keep from bursting out laughing. Her sister took the pic, and we walked out of the store and into the mall. We got something to eat, and sat down to talk. I could tell that her fiancé was just a tad miffed at her for the way she was going on and on and that she has sat on PAS’s lap. LOL. Finally, we left the mall and headed home. Later, when we got the film back, we were horrified to find that only one of the pics on the entire roll that we took had turned out. It was the one of me and her on his lap. We have no idea why the others did not turn out. I made her a copy of that one because she had forgotten to bring her camera. She teased him that she was going to get it blown up and hang it on the wall of their house when they got married. LOL. He shot her one of those looks. Oh, and I just wanted to add that they celebrated their first wedding anniversary on the 25th of September. And, she didn’t hang the pics on the wall of their house. LOL.