Chapter Ten - 1975
Adventures in the Alps
(Equivalent to 41 pages in hard-copy.)
The Cast - Chapters Ten through Fourteen:
Mito Catral, Margaret L. Carter, Johnny Galliher,
Jacques Sarli, François Catroux, Edward Zajac, Richard Callahan,
Al Pacino, John Brewer, Jackie Kennedy, Pierre Suter, Ed Coughlin,
Martha & Sam Welker, Baroness Carrie de Vendeuvre, Prince Rupert Loewenstein,
Cappy Badrutt, Countess Jacqueline de Ribes, Gilles Dufour, Karl Lagerfeld,
Eli Wallitt, Bernie Cornfeld, Charlie Freeman, Roy and Buthena Kirkdorffer,
Harold Levi, Mr. & Mrs. Truman Anderson, Mr. H.A. Jacques, Daniel Droze,
Mana Weiser, Mr. Toblerone, Dr. David Trueblood, Sir John Templeton,
Stewart Granger, Peter Herzog, David Fitts, Jerry Ratz, Mr. Liers, Pat Minihan,
Albert Moth, Nat Greenburg, Eric Banks, John French, Frank Charlton,
Barry Fletcher, Jaime Granger, Baron Tieson, David Hamilton,
Prince Hohenlohe, Countess Obolensky, Ron Ferri & Jean Pierre, John Stock,
Duchess of Sutherland, Guy Munthe, Axel Munthe, Colin Tennant,
Brian & Peggy Taylor, George & Elizabeth Lane, Klaus von Bülow,
Dixon Boardman, Mr. and Mrs. Harry Creighton, Ken Carr, David Jones,
Warren Serenbetz, The Earl of Lanesborough, Sir Harmar Nicholls,
John McCarthy, Norman Gurov, Gerald Lubner, Bill Bennette, David Hicks,
Selwyn Elkin, John Kay, David Warner, Stephen Kaufmann, David Sulzberger,
Simon Trimble, Allen Warren, Lionel Bart, Sir Guy Millard, Ben Coleman,
Tony Hail, Chuck Posey, Walt & Florence Patnode, Marguerite Littman,
Henry McIlhenny, Add and Wit, Vincent Friia, Peter Marshall, Tony Cloughley,
Alessandro Albrizzi, Tim Krusi, Alan Jones, Logan, Nora, Michael Beuttler,
Paul Wheeler, Richard Taylor, Jeremy Norman, Derek Frost, Bob Perkins,
Eduardo Llanyo, William Thuiller, Nicholas Kimber, Max Maguire,
John Schlesinger, Nicky Lane, Bobby Fryer, Mark McCormick, April Ashley,
Braham White, Dicky Fife, Christopher McDonell, Andre Moussoulos,
Anthony Redmile, Harold Gould, Ralph Clark, Naim Akill, Anthony Brown,
Alan Lumsden, Sompong Toomvhun,
Alix & Tom Dame and their daughters, Leslie and Laura,
Debbie Leonard, Charlie Keough, Bob Tebbutt, Moe Sherman,
May & Dan Leonard, Danny & Betty Leonard, Jack & Mary Tennant,
Dody & Bill Oliver, George & Isabel Brett, Danforth Leonard,
Jean & Andy Jones, David Harper, Lonnie Foster, David Griggs,
Michael Fish & Trevor, Sheridan Dufferin, Mr. Robert George,
Mr. Clive Vlieland-Boddy, Martin Vlieland-Boddy, Ian Landless,
Lord Litchfield, George Lazenby, Paul Lazenby, Major Anthony Everette,
Rupert Everette, Paul Littlewood, John Addey, Gil Karnig, Jackson Kelly,
Bill Hurlock, Walter Otto, Henri Tschudi, Ray LaMay, Parker Packard, Hank Snow,
Dr. Trudeau, Gary Trudeau, William Avery Rockefeller, Steve Briggs,
Joe & Clarissa Blagden, Tom Blagden, Steve Blagden, Stuart Kirby,
Robert Carrier, Miss Audré, Alan Sievewright, Placido Domingo,
Michael Cowie, David Clayton, Chuck & Susie Bade,
Baroness Carrie de Vendeuvre, Baroness Rochefoucauld,
Yves Saint-Laurent, Marc Bohan, and
Moments from Chapter Ten
Home at 68th Street… I get into the lift and stare,
“What the hell is Al Pacino doing taking a bag lady upstairs in the lift?”
“Truman, we can’t raise money for a company that isn’t doing anything.
Get your act together, we need a product to sell!”
Sam called, “Stewart Granger - you remember the movie star;
he’s developing a project called El Rancho Verde north of Marbella.
It may be the exclusive land deal we’ve been looking for!”
Mito calls, “I’ve got my GREEN CARD!!”
Henri Tschudi says, “There’s no money!”
From the end of Chapter Nine…
[I was renting a grand apartment at 9 East 68th Street in Manhattan whose living room has the same proportions as Jacque Sarli’s in Paris. Jacques had hired François Catroux to decorate his at a cost of over one million dollars, including the travertine marble wall covering. I had asked Zajac & Callahan to do the same for mine, except we used a B.F. Goodrich wall covering that only looked like Travertine.]
March 16, Johnny Galliher brings Jacques Sarli over to have a drink. He catches on immediately and we have a good laugh – the décor cost me a million dollars less than he had paid for the same look in Paris!
Johnnie has been telling Jacques about me for years and he is intrigued. So am I about him.
Johnny has, in his own discreet way, been telling me about Jacques for years. Jacques is a Dutch Jew who made a great deal of money in war surplus equipment, but quickly found that money alone could not get him what he desperately needed – acceptance by polite society. He ran into Johnny at a club in Paris and was besotted by his looks, his grace, and his entrée to the haute monde. From what I can judge, they made some kind of a pact.
Johnny told Jacques what to do; it was often sadistic. Jacques moved to the best addresses, bought important art, gave dinners for the right people, and was slowly accepted by society. In return, Jacques bought Johnny two houses on Chester Street in London, and put the apartment on Avenue Gabrielle in Paris in Johnny’s name.
In public, Johnny treated him like shit; Jacques didn’t seem to mind – I think he derived masochistic pleasure from the arrangement. In private… well, I have never hazarded a guess.
This evening at my apartment, Jacques says, “I think I have an idea; come see me Thursday, the 20th, at the Pierre for drinks and dinner.”
… I could feel a new chapter beginning.
It’s the 20th of March, 1975. I’m distracted. Mito and I are in the middle of a tiff and he is living somewhere in the Village.
“1973 in San Francisco had been a waste of time, as was 1974 in Provo and Florida; would this be a more productive year? I sure hope so,” I was thinking as I got into the lift at 68th Street… “what the hell is Al Pacino doing taking a bag lady upstairs in the lift?”
Around 7:30, I meet Jacques at The Pierre at 61st and Fifth. His room overlooks the Park – this is a seriously good hotel.
I’m having lunch with John Brewer who lives in 1a across the entrance hall from me. John’s very nice. He has a company called Fonthill with reps in the D&D Building; it deals in decorator fabrics – he’s helping with the curtains I need in 1b. His boyfriend, Paul, is rather retiring; I don’t know what he does but I assume he’s also in the design world. We have hamburgers at P.J. Clarke’s on Third Ave. across from Bloomingdales. P.J.’s has been flipping burgers since 1884; Jackie Kennedy had her own table for years.
Over drinks, we chat about the time Johnny and I had stayed in Jacques’ terrific house on Paris’ Ile St. Louis a few years ago. I had discovered a secret staircase in my closet that led down to a gay bar in the basement, and Jacques was sitting at the bar! Quite unbelievable but then nearly everything is.
Over dinner, Jacques explains that he is a principal in a private oil company and wants help marketing its shares.
I tell him, “My forte is recruiting and training salesmen, not selling securities, but I do have many contact around Europe who might be able to help.”
Jacques thinks it is worth my coming to Europe for a couple of weeks to see if I can generate any interest. He’ll pay my expenses.
“Give me a couple of days to judge the viability.” I said; thanked him for the dinner and went to Uncle Charlie’s South, one of my favorite gay bars. I went home alone at 4:30AM.
I call Pierre Suter in Geneva. We had met last July in Geneva with Ed Coughlin re: Provo. You will remember that he is an international financial services advisor currently occupied with CATU Containers, selling shipping containers to individuals as an tangible, income-producing, investment, and doing very well after the fall of the stock markets in 1970, and the evaporation of paper investments like IOS and Keith Barish’s Gramco.
“Can you sell an unlisted, oil company’s shares?” I ask.
“I can find all sorts of clients that will buy almost anything. Come on over.” He answers.
I ask Sam Welker the same question. He responds, “I’m thinking about getting involved in something crazier – selling mineral rights in Colorado! Come on over so we can look into it seriously.”
I call Jacques and say, “It’s really not my bailiwick, but there does seem to be some interest. I’ve tentative meetings in Geneva and Zurich. If need be, can you put me up in Paris for a few days? I’d like to fly to Zurich on Saturday. Can you arrange the ticket?”
Jacques is thrilled. “Yes, yes!” He gave me his travel agent’s number and left the details to me.
On Thursday, Johnny has some boys for drinks, and after, I meet Mito at Country Cousin for dinner. We make up and he comes back to 68th Street. He’ll follow up the curtain arrangements being organized by John Brewer.
The next day, I pick up my air ticket, and Mito and I dine at home.
Saturday, March 29th, Mito gives me a haircut - he is a pro after all - and at 10:00PM, I depart for Zurich.
I arrive at 10AM Sunday and take the train to Chur. Martha and Sam Welker meet me and we drive in their big Chevy SUV up the twisty track to Flims-Waldhaus. They have a big, Estes Park, Colorado-style house; natch – Sam’s known for his cowboy boots and large-brimmed Stetson. They put me up in the Hotel Flims Dorf.
Monday, March 31, 1975. I spend the morning outlining Jacques’ deal and going over the prospectus and the last Annual Report. Then it’s Sam’s turn…
Sam and Martha have become The S.C. Welker Group that has marketing and sales agreements for much of Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa (similar to Sam’s territory during the IOS years) for the following products:
Oil Field Insurance – This is Sam’s personal project. He regularly visits the oil fields of Libya and companies such as Schlumberger to broker various insurance programs essential to oil exploration and production. This are big-ticket policies with huge premiums.
ITT’s Palm Coast
ITT, the original International Telephone & Telegraph, was created in 1920 to build the first worldwide system of interconnected telephone lines. The company grew quickly through strategic acquisitions and the purchase of telephony patents. The result was the creation of a major international provider of telephone switching equipment and telecommunications services.
From 1960 to date, ITT has acquired more than 350 companies and has a portfolio that includes well-known businesses such as Sheraton hotels, Avis Rent-a-Car, Hartford Insurance, and Continental Baking, the maker of Wonder Bread. During this time, ITT has grown from a medium-sized business with $760 million in sales to a global corporation with $17 billion in sales.
One of its projects is the development and sale of real estate on the east coast of Florida… Palm Coast.
• Before 1969, land that eventually became the City of Palm Coast was considered by some as "a big pine-covered swamp." But when the corporate eyes of ITT/Levitt looked upon the virtually uninhabited land, they saw 22,000 acres of golf courses, marinas, oceanfront motels, scenic drives, and house lots awaiting the arrival of sun-seeking "pioneers."
• Developed by ITT Community Development Corporation (Levitt) in 1969, the original development plan encompassed 48,000 home sites on approximately 42,000 acres (17,000 ha) of the 68,000 acres (28,000 ha) owned by ITT.
• In those days, land sales in Florida were looked upon as shaky at best. Most people believed that the lots really were swamp land and the deal was a big con, but ITT provided the financial muscle to construct the infrastructure, and paved streets and central water and sewer serve all lots developed within the plan.
• The grand opening of Palm Coast occurred on October 29, 1970. The first public building, a Welcome Center, serves as the hub for sales activities, and a 64-foot-high observation tower provides panoramic views of the surrounding woods, lakes, streams, the Intracoastal Waterway, and the Atlantic Ocean. It presides over a golf course, model homes, canals, and early home construction.
• The earliest "pioneers" began occupying their homes in January 1972 and the project is a success.
• The S.C. Welker Group has a few salesmen scattered throughout its territory that need training and motivation, and the Group needs to recruit and train many more to fulfil its responsibility to sell Palm Coast Home Sites.
[As Tony Hail might say, “This weren’t no pile of shit.”
Wikipedia et al. 2017 - In 1996, Palm Coast became an incorporated city, and, today, has approximately 76,450 residents, 13 beautiful parks, 125+ miles of connecting trails and paths for walking/bicycling, abundant fishing and boating, a year-round Running Series, and world-class tennis and golf. The community offers excellent schools, a business assistance center that promotes local businesses, and extensive City services that make Palm Coast a great place to live, work and play.]
“The Group needs more products and/or services to offer our clients and potential clients.
“I am currently negotiating with Truman Anderson of Denver on some kind of a petroleum and/or mineral rights program, and am looking for a European land deal.
“But we won’t have the credibility to acquire more product lines without a viable sale force.
“Ted, your Jacques Sarli stock deal isn’t very interesting - none of us have a lot of faith in paper investments these days, but it’s a start, and it’s brought you back to us.”
I definitely smelled a new chapter opening…
Sam says, “I want you to be the General Sales Manager of the S.C. Welker Group and build the sales force we need. You and I have done wonders in the past, will you accept this challenge, today?”
“Yes, I’d love to.” I reply. “But if you don’t have credibility because you don’t have a sales organization, imagine the credibility I have to fight to build a sales force with only one product to sell. It will take me at least five months before you will see any significant numbers of salesmen and sales.”
“We understand, Martha and Sam say in unison.”
It’s Monday, March 31, 1975.
We put this in our agreement:
On March 31, 1975, Carter says, ”It will take me at least five months before you will see any significant numbers of salesmen and sales.”
“We understand, Martha and Sam say in unison.”
We spend the rest of the day discussing commissions, overrides, and expenses. We agree that I would be officially based in Flims and Sam gave me the keys to a small apartment they had upstairs from the equivalent of a 7-11.
The next day, Tuesday, April 1, I signed the agreement Martha had drafted, and moved into the studio. I called Jacques that my capabilities of helping his project had increased measurably and could he put me up for about ten days starting Friday? “Yes.”
Thursday, Sam drove me to Zurich, I took the 8PM train for Paris, and arrive at Gare de l’Est twelve hours later. I love sleeping cars!
I met Pierre Suter at Les Deux Magots in Saint-Germain-des-Prés for lunch
and arrived on Jacques’ stoop at 44 Ave. Gabriel - mid-way between Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré and Avenue Montaigne, a stone's throw from the Champs-Elysées - at 2PM, bag and yellow tulips in hand.
The apartment was stark. So religiously stark that Jacques put the flowers in the kitchen, and they were never seen again!
The apartment had been done by François Catroux,
and, like The Point, was “always ready for the photographers” i.e. nothing ever out of place. (Here, no flowers allowed.)
From Vanity Fair, September 2016:
The Secrets of François Catroux, the Über-Rich’s
Favorite Interior Designer
David Geffen’s $54 million penthouse, a new Saudi royal palace,
Barry Diller’s 305-foot yacht—all share the rarefied touch of designer
With a major book on his work set to be published, James Reginato discovers the high-style life of Catroux and his wife, Betty.
François Catroux has been the decorator of choice for aristocrats, moguls, fashion queens, royals, and oligarchs alike since 1968, when he opened his Paris office. His clients over the years have included Guy and Marie-Hélène de Rothschild, Leslie and Abigail Wexner, Barry Diller and Diane von Furstenberg, Princess Firyal of Jordan, and Roman Abramovich, to name a few.
The guestroom bookcases are filled with pre-Columbian figures; the closet is so immaculate, I don’t want to put any of my things in it.
Jacques, Baroness Carrie de Vendeuvre, a buddy of mine I had met with Johnny Galliher, and I dine at a bistro; later we go to Club Sept – le denier cri, gay club.
The next day, I pick up my mail at the American Express – my mailbox of choice since years; there’re letters from Mito…
How was your trip to Paris? I’m staying in my “small room” for immigration purposes, from whom there is no news. Can’t work re: immigration & can’t pay for flat without working. Had I known it was going to be like this, I would not have done the whole marriage thing. Anyway, I don’t want to stay in 68th Street – too lonely without you. What about plans for the apt.? I gave Ken & John Brewer haircuts at 1a at 68th St.
I explain to Jacques that there is considerable resistance to buying shares of unlisted private companies from a salesman. However, as most of my sales contacts have developed a well-established clientele over many years, some may take a gamble, but they need back-up material. We need a cover letter explaining the company and the opportunity. We also need the latest annual report, and, of course, the prospectus. These will all have to be produced in the most professional manner possible, on expensive stock, and translated into English, French, and German in considerable quantities. When all this is complete, I will distribute it all to the field. “Can you get a multi-lingual secretary to do the donkey work?”
The next few days are spent with the secretary during the day, interspersed with lunches and movies and dinners with Carrie.
One evening I run into Graham, my ex-houseboy/chauffeur from the Watergardens in London at Le Sept.
Paris is jumping. Every time I turn around, there is someone I know: Prince Rupert Loewenstein from Kitty Miller’s party in Majorca, top model Cappy Badrutt with Countess Jacqueline de Ribes – another pal of Johnny’s, Philip de Joussoneau with whom Mito and I used to see in San Francisco, etc.
I meet an attractive, 23-year-old, Gilles Dufour, who only responded to really dirty talk – a first for me. He ended up being Karl Lagerfeld’s boyfriend for years. (How could he, really!)
Wikipedia, et al. - Talented and versatile, Gilles Dufour created costumes for Mia Farrow, Viviane Romance and Annie Girardot, for films directed by Claude Chabrol and Audiard.
Since 1983, Gilles Dufour, having been Karl Lagerfeld's right-hand man at Chanel where he designed the accessories collections for 15 years. In 1998 he left Chanel to became Artistic Director of Balmain Diffusion Ready-to-Wear and the License Studios.
After three seasons, Gilles Dufour was promptly sacked from the French fashion house Balmain, after the models appeared in T-shirts emblazoned with �Whore� and �Bitch� in the autumn/winter 2000 show.
I told you he had a thing about dirty talk!
The translations are not done but I needed to attend to other things. I fly to Geneva on the 18th, check into the Intercontinental and have dinner with Pierre Suter. He is anxiously awaiting the sales material.
The next day, Sunday, I fly to Zurich as Jacques flies to Vienna. I stay at the International Hotel and have a dinner meeting with Ron Clay, an expat American in the securities business.
I also check in to Le Chat Noir, one of Zurich’s few gay bars. Bored, I ask the bartender to get me a taxi – they do that kind of thing in Zurich. A few minutes later, a stogie-puffing, cloth-capped, unshaven man comes in the front door – my taxi! Jesus, I didn’t think he’d come in the place; embarrassed I follow him out into his car. He shrugs and takes me to my hotel… another first.
Monday morning, off to Flims. I spend the day on the phone: Eli Wallitt, Ed Coughlin, Pierre Suter… it’s like old home week at IOS.
I’m totally surprised to find Boursin, peppered cheese at the “7-11” under my apartment. I love the stuff but can’t find it most places; amazing that it’s here in this teeny village in the Swiss Alps! I grill a pork chop and go to bed.
Two more days on the phone and signing cover letters; finally the translated Annual Reports of Jacques’ company arrive. I pack them up, drive to Zurich, and catch SR804 to London. Had drinks with J.G. and dinner at The Grange.
Friday, London - I pick up two shirts at Harvey & Hudson, change money at Chase, bump into Bernie Cornfeld and Charlie Freeman, call Mito, and have dinner at Trader Vic’s.
Saturday, April 26, London - Lunch picnic with Roy Kirkdorffer, visit Harold Levi in Wellington Hospital, and go to Heathrow to fly to New York. Mito joins me at 68th Street.
Monday: New York - Dry Cleaners; leave two Napoleonic Cups and Saucers from HIWE at the Antique Porcelain Company – I need the cash more than the cups; give Mito $60 for paint and brushes to paint the apartment, and money for stamps to forward mail to Flims; order two pair of spectacles; ask John Brewer to cut the bottom of the front door so it will close over new carpeting that is on order from Bloomingdales, go to JFK and catch United 165 to Denver.
Denver?... Sam’s been trying to cut a deal with a Truman Anderson to manage some kind of a financial product we could sell in Europe. Truman is an old buddy of Sam’s in the oil business (not that Sam is in the oil business, but he likes to think he is). Sam sends me to check out Truman’s ideas and see if we can come up with something together.
I arrive in Denver around six. Steve (?) picks me up and asks, “Can we sell Petro-Search to Americans abroad?”
“What’s Petro-Search?” I ask. No response; I guess he’s the tall, quiet, cowboy type.
I meet Mr. and Mrs. Anderson and they usher me into a large, clean, guestroom in their large, clean American house… with views of the Rockies! The bathroom is twice the size of my apartment in Flims. I’m asleep by 10:30.
Tuesday: Truman gives me the “History of the Industry” for several hours - oil exploration and production, mineral rights, etc. etc.; it’s mainly Greek to me. American exuberance and optimism has its place – here it is natural; in the grey, stone, bank buildings, and accounting firms of Europe, it is definitely suspect.
Mrs. Truman serves a lunch of delicious potato salad and apple pie… lots of apple pie.
In spite of my reticence, Vince Allen and Ron Verlander - I guess you’d call them “hands” - work on a marketing agreement (for an unspecified product).
More unbridled exuberance carries us through the afternoon.
Dinner of roast beef, mashed potatoes, and peas is followed by what was left of the apple pies.
I go outside to see the horses; it is starting to snow.
Wednesday: I’m up at 6. Vince takes me down to breakfast at 7:30. Work continues on the agreement all day – territories, commissions, sales administration, sales materials, shell company in Geneva, what ifs, etc. etc.
The snow is too deep to go outside.
Again a lovely lunch, and a wholesome dinner, and bed at 10:30.
Month One Completed.
Thursday, May 1st: I board United 160 at noon to arrive at JFK at 5:40PM, and, after chores with Mito in Manhattan, on to Zurich on the 4th.
The rest of May whizzes by. Sam gives me his Chevy Nova and I commute between the studio in Flims, to hotels in Zurich and Geneva for recruiting meetings. Remember, this is years before the Internet and email.
Truman wants me to set up a shell company for him in Geneva to be called IPEX Services, S.A. I meet with Mr. H.A. Jacques, a corporate lawyer recommended by Truman. If I were running the show, I would have used Ed Coughlin with whom I’ve worked for years.
We take a shell company “off the shelf,” prepare suitable Memorandums and Articles of Association, and draft BoD (Board of Director) minutes. Following the terms of the agreement we hashed out in Denver, the UBS (Union Banque Suisse) main Geneva branch will be the depository. We will need a parallel arrangement in Chur. By the end of the day, all is in order.
The next day, I get $750 from Mito from the Antique Porcelain Company for the Napoleonic cups and saucers!
Pierre Suter takes me to dinner at Le Clemenee followed by drinks at Griffin’s.
“Griffin’s Club is the second oldest club in Geneva, Switzerland. It boasts an exceptional location and a sultry sophisticated décor, making this a super chic nightlife destination for the exclusively rich, world famous figures and international celebrities. Griffin’s club is strictly members only and is one of the trendiest nightlife spots in Geneva, described as simply “a place of dreams” - an ultra-cool and luxury restaurant/disco.”
Next day, I drive to nearby Tailloires and lunch at Au Père Bise on Lake Annecy. This is one of the truly great Relais et Châteaux properties in the world with food “worth more than a journey.” Lunch was 160 Swiss Francs – costly maybe, but not expensive.
I skip dinner.
On the twentieth, I go to the printer for proofs for Jacques Sarli’s Annual Report that we need to accompany the prospectus before we can hope to make sales.
I lunch with Daniel Droze – my lover/partner for two years in Malta and Ireland whom I met at the Embassy Bar in Geneva on May 2, 1965. (See Chapter 5.) He’s now married to a girl. He asked about “the little red racing car”… he thought that I had promised the proceeds from its eventual sale to him – I didn’t remember, and was embarrassed. It must have been after 9PM!
I’m running a recruitment ad in the International Herald Tribune and the responses coming in to Mana at the SCW Gp office in Flims are keeping me busy.
Letter from Mito – took down filthy curtains from 1b and taped newspapers up to keep people from looking in; will go to SFO w/Filipino ladies, all expenses paid for 2 weeks.
Commuting daily from Flims to Zurich and back is silly. All my recruiting interviews are held in Zurich or Geneva so I visit the Hotel Waldhaus Dolder, where I had stayed in May 1971 and enjoyed the pool with the lad from the University of St. Gallen. Mr. Toblerone, the manager, is still here and I contract for the same penthouse room I had before, on a permanent basis for an unspecified period starting tomorrow, May 29.
The next day, I clean out the studio, drive to Zurich, meet with Peter Herzog, my most promising container salesman, move into the penthouse at the Waldhaus Dolder, and try out the pool - Mr. Toblerone still takes off his toupée to swim! Sam calls to ask me to pick up Dr. Trueblood at the airport tomorrow, and bring him to Flims.
Wikipedia, et. Al. - David Elton Trueblood (December 12, 1900 – December 20, 1994), was a noted 20th-century American Quaker author and theologian, former chaplain both to Harvard and Stanford universities.
Elton Trueblood was born December 12, 1900 in Iowa, the fourth of five children, and graduated from William Penn College in Iowa in 1922. He did graduate study at Brown University, Hartford Seminary, and Harvard University before finishing his Ph.D. at Johns Hopkins University in Philosophy.
During his career, Trueblood held faculty and chaplain positions at Haverford College, Guilford College, Harvard University, Stanford University, and Earlham College.
He always maintained an internationalist perspective, serving for many years as the permanent representative from the Global Quaker community to the World Council of Churches, an organization he helped bring into being. Trueblood was friends with Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan.
Sam was an active member of the church in Flims and often asked guest speakers to add enlightenment to the little church in the Alps. Sir John Templeton, the noted investment expert, came more than once.
Even though I have never been religious, I was raised an Episcopalian, attended Sunday School in Mt. Kisco all my youth, and was confirmed. I almost never go to church but, out of deference to the Welkers, I attended the church in Flims when I was in the village, even partaking of communion.
At first, I thought Sam was just showing off. His were the only US dollars in the collection plate that was passed throughout the congregation – everyone in the village could see how much he was giving. Also, I never saw him attend church anywhere else or make any reference to religion any other time. But he was pretty consistent in supporting this church, so perhaps he was sincere.
Month Two Completed.
On the first of June, Sam brings Dr. Trueblood to Zurich to speak at the Tabor Chapel. The chapel stands on the promenade street and is a neo-Gothic prayer hall with organ loft, which is part of the United Methodist Church. The church was built in 1873 to designs by John Baur and remembers its name from Mount Tabor, where according to Christian tradition, the Transfiguration of Jesus took place. It was a moving sermon and didn’t help me much in preparing my expense report for the month.
There’s a letter waiting for me from Mito, postmarked San Francisco.
I went to Las Vegas. Had to take the newspapers off the window of 1b as the agent complained. The curtains are coming in 3 weeks.
On the second, I drive to Flims and turn in my expense report to Henri Tschudi, Sam’s in-house accountant, who nearly faints when he sees the receipt of the lunch at Au Pere Bise. Back to Zurich.
Mana gave me two tickets to an opera at the Stadt Theatre in St. Gallen that evening. I didn’t need the second ticket. Arriving well beforehand, I spied a very cute guy in the ticket queue. I told him that I wasn’t able to attend and would he like my ticket? We giggled when later he slid along the row and discovered he was sitting next to me! Jerry was attending the University and we had fun flirting. While I don’t remember the production, I hummed my way back to Zurich alone.
On Sunday, June 8, I drive to Flims to go to church – Sam is not there! He was on the phone to Truman, “Truman, we can’t raise money for a company that isn’t doing anything. Get your act together, we need a product to sell!”
June 10 – Zurich – As you know, I learned about CATU Containers from Pierre Suter, but now Pierre wanted to be part of the SCW Gp – he had faith in our future, and figured we could cut a better deal with CATU directly, and give him a higher commission. He agreed to make the introduction.
The next day, I telephone Mr. Lindett of CATU Containers.
“Ah yes, M. Suter said you were going to call. We are a leasing container company based in Geneva, Switzerland. We are specialized in building all kind of containers and deliver them worldwide in a short period. We offer long term lease and lease agreements for all types of ISO maritime containers. We sell individual containers to private people and companies. We have a long established relationship with many of the industries shipping lines, suppliers and depot networks.”
I explained that M. Suter actually worked for the SCW Gp., that we wanted a marketing arrangement with them directly, that further sales by M. Suter should be considered sales by SCW Gp., and that Mr. Welker would like a meeting to formalize the arrangement. Mr. Lindett agreed.
Zurich - June 20 – A card from Mito – “I’m back in NYC fr SFO.”
One of the few salesmen that Sam counted as working for him was David Fitts, based in Germany. I call him and set a meeting at the Hotel Frankfurter Hof in Frankfurt on the 24th. We have an excellent meeting regarding Palm Coast and I resupply him with sales kits.
To Zurich. Called Mito. “I saw Paul Wilmot in the 9th Circle gay bar. Jacques Sarli is so mad at you, he has been telling bad things about you all over the world.”
I call Jacques, “I’m waiting for you to give me the sales materials, there’s little point in bad-mouthing me.”
He sputtered, “It’s taking longer than I ever imagined.”
June 27 – to Flims. Called Mito, “Nothing from immigration, rent has to be paid. Ron Ferri in Spain.”
June closes with two CATU sales from Peter Herzog and…
a telegram fr Mito - ALL MY LOVE TILL NOW AND FOREVER/stop/MISS YOU/stop/LOVE KISSES/stop/ME.
Month Three completed.
July 2 – ltr fr Mito – Happy Anniversary – four years!
I sent him 4 dozen roses.
July 3 – To Zurich. In the past three months, I had accumulated a lot of change in Swiss Francs. I kept it in glass jars, the kind in which you make jam with the little red rubber seal and the metal clip closure. Putting on my best Savile Row charcoal grey suit and carrying the jars in my small, Vuitton duffle. I stride up to the counter in the Credit Suisse headquarters on Bahnhofstrasse.
Glancing over the teller’s shoulder to spot the centrifugal, change-sorting machine, and putting the heavy jars on the counter, I say, “I’d like to exchange all this for bank notes, please.”
He looked me up and down, shrugged and, reaching down, brought up an 18 by 24-inch plastic board with teeny slots all over it.
He said, “We have no machine, you can fill this up over there. The various denominations have specific slots. When it’s full, bring it back and I’ll give you another.”
Can you imagine the scene? Me in my finery, fumbling for two hours… juggling jars, filling slots, dropping coins, and all the time mumbling...
“I can’t believe in the most important branch of the most important bank in the world…!”
July 4 – ltr fr Mito – I’m in 1b. Ron upstairs is slow with the rent and hasn’t paid the cablevision. I cleaned windows; curtains still haven’t arrived. NYC is HOT!
Sam called, “Stewart Granger - you remember the movie star - is developing a project called El Rancho Verde north of Marbella in Spain. It may be the exclusive land deal we’ve been looking for. If I can close it, this really will be Independence Day!”
July 6 – Mito called – The Fairies (sic) are paying two month’s rent tomorrow.
July 7 – Mana calls, “We got our first lead directly from CATU, here are the details…” I call Peter Herzog; he goes to Bern and makes the sale!
July 8 - Ltr fr Mito – I finally heard from Immigration. I’m getting a Green Card to be issued in August! I will soon be able to leave NYC & come to be with you!
Sam called and asked, “Why should we pay you for each night?”
I answered, “Because we agreed Flims was my official base.”
July 9 – Sam picks me up at the Waldhaus Dolder, we drive to Geneva, and have a good meeting with CATU finalizing all details. We drive to Flims where we spend the next couple of days producing sales materials.
July 12 – To Zurich, meet w/Herzog. Fly to Frankfurt, dinner w/Fitts; check into the Frankfurter Hof Hotel. They gave me room 526 – I still have the key!
July 14 – Meeting w/Fitts in my room. One of the telephone lines wasn’t working and the technician who came couldn't fix it. With Fitts looking on in astonishment, I pull away the bed and scramble along the edge of rug to solve the problem - the wire had come out of the socket. I remember him thinking I was mad… angry, yes; mad, no. We have a good working lunch and he is excited to hear more about the Stewart Granger project. He feels a European land deal would be much easier to sell to Germans, than Palm Coast.
July 15 – I decide to re-base myself in Frankfurt, but the Frankfurter Hof is too rich for our blood. I find the Hotel an der Messe, near the huge convention center. The landlady is a charmer and agrees to give me a nice ground floor room on a permanent basis. When I returned later in the day, I brought her a bouquet of flowers.
I call Sam to give him my new number and address; he announces, “Stewart Granger has signed the contract giving the SCW Gp exclusive marketing and sales rights for Europe, including the U.K., the Middle East, and North Africa!
“The project is beautiful land for sale north of Marbella in Andalusia, Spain. We will go down there sometime in October, but as soon as I can get the sales contracts and maps to you, we can start selling.”
Wikipedia et. al: Stewart Granger (born 6 May 1913 – 16 August 1993) was an English film actor, mainly associated with heroic and romantic leading roles. He was a popular leading man from the 1940s to the early 1960s.
He was born James Lablache Stewart in Old Brompton Road, Kensington, West London. When he became an actor, he was advised to change his name in order to avoid being confused with the American actor James Stewart. (Granger was his Scottish grandmother's maiden name.) Offscreen friends and colleagues continued to call him Jimmy for the rest of his life, but to the general public he became Stewart Granger.
In 1956 Granger became a naturalised citizen of the United States.
In 1970 Granger said "Stewart Granger was quite a successful film star, but I don't think he was an actor's actor."
Two days later, CATU agrees with me that they will accept all new leads names as ours unless the people are already known to them. We will get a 10% commission now with an additional 3% retroactive to the date of our original agreement when confirmed by Sam.
Mana forwards a letter from Mito - I have eyes and ears in that part of the world but have fun. I need money to pay the dentist before he will put in the cap. Still no curtains.
July 21 – Sam calls, “All agreed with CATU. We get 13%, and can do a “world-wide” mailing starting in Germany, then Austria, then Scandinavia.”
The next day, David Fitts sells his first Palm Coast lot!
July 23: Over breakfast, I notice a recruiting ad for Trans Container Services in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper.
Hmmm. I call them and set an appointment with Mr. Ratz for the 29th. On the appointed day, I meet Jerry Ratz, an unattractive American. He says TCS can give us a higher commission than CATU and that his leasing services are superior. We both said we’d think about some kind of cooperation. The next day, I called him back to see what kind of a deal we might strike for the U.K. We agreed to meet in London on August 11.
Month Four completed.
It is now four months since signing with Sam; I send him my activity Report for July:
July Activity Report
Our Sales Force is gaining strength, we are making sales, and have increased our product line.
We now have men in the following:
• France (Paris & Bordeaux),
• Germany (Munich and Frankfurt),
• Netherlands (Amsterdam & Utrecht),
• Switzerland (Geneva and Zurich), and
We made our first sale of Palm Coast and our first direct sales of CATU Containers.
Our product line now consists of:
• Insurance Brokerage
• CATU Containers
• Stewart Granger’s El Rancho Verde, and
• A new deal is pending with Trans Container Services.
I travelled virtually every day and interviewed the many responders to our regular recruiting ad in the International Herald Tribune.
End of Report, Hotel An der Messe, Frankfurt
ltr fr Mito – Thanks for your letters. Capped tooth looks real. Sanka is smiling.
Aug 3 – Fly to Frankfurt, letter fr Fitts, lost key - had to crawl in hotel window.
Aug 5 – ltr fr Mito – Many thanks for your letters. Choz! Enclosed are pictures from an old film of Blazes – built with our own four hands. It would be great if we could buy it from your family – it’s a beautiful place and it seems you are the only one interested in it. It’s part of you and if we could do something to keep it, we should do it. John says the curtains are ready on Tuesday. I’m so excited to be working together soon. Let’s make it work wonderful and profitable. I want to get rich with you. That’s all I want in life now – I know it very well – be with you – loving you – working with you – everything with you, and just to visit my family once in a while. After you, I love my family too!
Aug 6 – Drive to Brussels and meet with three respondents to the IHT ad. One, Mr. Liers is especially promising. He also has an associate in Jordan who is interested in learning more. Stay at the Hotel Bedford, Brussels.
Aug 8 – Drive to London, check in with Sam and call Mr. Liers. He’s definitely joined and his wife will work with him too. Stay at the Britannia Hotel, London.
Aug 9 – Buy two pairs of shoes at Gucci, get a pen refill at Asprey, 3 shirts and 2 ties at Harvey & Hudson.
Aug 10 – Sunday – There’s a good article about Stewart Granger and El Rancho Verde in the Sunday Times.
On Monday, I have a meeting with Jerry Ratz at Trans Containers’ office at 77 Egerton Gardens. I explain the SCW Gp. structure, our recruiting successes, and our product line. He wants us to drop CATU for TCS (Trans Container Services) in return for having the U.K. exclusively.
I move to the Cadogan Hotel where Oscar Wilde lived in the day.
The Cadogan is in the heart of the city’s most affluent district and shares the surrounding streets with leading retail and designer names. Chanel, Hermes, Cartier, Harrods and Harvey Nichols, to name a few, are all within walking distance.
Shortly after opening, the hotel became infamous for the arrest of Oscar Wilde on 6 April 1895, in room no. 118. He was charged with "committing acts of gross indecency with other male persons." Despite pleas by friends to flee the country, Wilde chose to stay and was found guilty and served two years hard labor.
The events in the room were immortalized by the poet laureate John Betjeman in his tragic poem The Arrest of Oscar Wilde at the Cadogan Hotel.
Aug 12 – 15 - To Cambridge and recruit 2 old ILI/IOS colleagues. Back to London and meet w/Sam. Dinner with Pat Minihan, who took over my Northern Ireland ILI operation when I moved to London in 1967. Constant calls to sales force.
Aug 16 – Celebrate my birthday with Roy and his wife, Buthena, and his family at Pizza Express.
I spend the next few days with Roy and Buthena, ex-IOSers and great friends Albert Moth, Nat Greenburg, and Eric Banks; and had dinner at my favorite, Mimmo’s!
Aug 21 – Mito calls, he’s got his GREEN CARD!! And, three days later, the 24th, arrives from New York!
Aug 25 – Sam agrees to hire Mito to assist me. Two days later, we make the first ERV sales and place a new recruiting ad in London’s Daily Telegraph.
Month Five completed.
It is now 5 months since I started with the S. C. Welker Group. I send Sam and Martha my activity report for August:
Dear Sam and Martha,
It was Monday, March 31, 1975 when I said, “it will take me at least five months before you will see any significant numbers of salesmen and sales.”
“We understand, you and Martha said in unison.”
August Activity Report
It is now five months since I started. Our Sales Force continues to gain strength, we are making sales regularly, and have increased our product line even further.
We now have men in the following countries:
• France (Paris & Bordeaux),
• Germany (Munich and Frankfurt),
• Netherlands (Amsterdam & Utrecht),
• Switzerland (Geneva and Zurich), and
• United Kingdom – several men we worked with for years in ILI/IOS.
We continue to sell Palm Coast, CATU Containers, and have now started selling El Rancho Verde.
Our product line now consists of:
• Sam’s Insurance Brokerage,
• CATU Containers,
• Stewart Granger’s El Rancho Verde, and
• TCS Container Programs (Trans Container Services).
We continue to attract recruits through the International Herald Tribune, London’s Daily Telegraph, and our own sales force.
Most importantly, we are now operating with our own self-generated momentum.
End of Report
Sam and Marta are very happy with my progress.
Mito and I are now working together.
The beginning of September, ERV sales really take off. We do $45,000 in the first three days! On top of that, Pat Minihan joins the Group to manage sales in the U.K. On the 13th, Mito and I take the Hovercraft and drive to Brussels to have a 3-hour lunch w/Liers, drive on to Frankfurt, and stay at the Frankfurter Hof.
The next day, we have recruiting ads in London’s Sunday Telegraph and Sunday Times. We drive to Zurich, pick up Pat Minihan at the airport, spend time in the office in Flims, and have dinner with the Welkers.
The next four days are spent in Flims meeting with Pat, Sam, and Mana. ERV sales are pouring in – three from London, five from Belgium. As Pat returns to London, Mito and I continue the “carnival” – lunch in Liechtenstein, interviews in Munich and Nuremberg.
On the 26th, Liers reports 11 leads from 5 ads and three brilliant men recruited. Each manages a province and will have 3-5 men each within two months. Mito and I check into the Frankfurter Hof.
Mito and I drive on to Hamburg and stay at the Intercontinental. Sam says he doesn’t need any more general Activity Reports. Mana is administering all the sales now, and he can keep track right there in Flims.
Jerry Ratz reports that Pat is bothering his office in London, “Can’t you deal with him directly?”
September 29th, I told Pat that he must deal only with me and Flims. He said he’d like to have a 600 pound monthly draw. I didn’t like the sound of that. He has to make his own sales and not rely just on overrides from his men. Maybe he got spoiled living off the overrides of the insurance structure I created and turned over to him in Belfast… I hope he’s got the fortitude to succeed now. As I didn’t want to affect the momentum that was building, I agreed to the draw.
Month Six completed.
Recruitment and sales growing steadily.
Oct 2 – On to Dusseldorf; Pat reports that John French & Frank Charlton (two of the best managers in the ILI/IOS days in the U.K.) have resigned from Cannon Assurance (the company into which International Life Insurance Co. (UK) Ltd. morphed) and are now working for us full time. Each have six men.
That’s terrific news! Then comes another call… John French has made his first TCS sale!
The next morning, Pat reports 6 TCS specials sold -13,000 pounds!
On the 4th, we drive to A’dam and interview a man at Schiphol Airport who had just arrived from Iran.
On to Rotterdam on the 5th for a meeting at that airport. Pat reports 6 sales from Barry Fletcher’s group in the south of England. (Barry worked for me in ILI/IOS and was helping to set up a Home Shoppers Plan operation.) Mito and I spend two days on paperwork and motivational phone calls.
On Oct 8, Mito flies to London while I fly to Zurich, meet Sam at the airport, and we fly on to Malaga, Spain, to visit with Stewart Granger and see El Rancho Verde.
Jaime Granger, Stewart Granger’s son, meets us at the airport; we get a flat tire en route to the hotel! Finally, we get a chance to clean up, and then go to Mr. Granger’s beautiful home.
He welcomes us and introduces two of his people - Baron Tieson and David Hamilton.
That evening, Sam dines with Stewart, and I go with Jaime to the port in Marbella and dine with Prince Hohenlohe and his wife, Honey, his niece, and Countess Obolensky. Turned out, like Bernie, Honey had a pet Ocelot. Good thing she hadn’t brought it to dinner.!
Prince Alfonso Hohenlohe
12:05AM GMT 24 Dec 2003
Prince Alfonso Hohenlohe, who has died aged 79, was the founder of the sybaritic Marbella Club and the doyen of the Costa del Sol crowd. A scion of one of Bavaria's grandest families, Hohenlohe was a hyperactive playboy affectionately dubbed the "King of Clubs". He could reasonably claim to have invented what was once Europe's most fashionable resort.
In the morning of October 9, Jaime picks us up and we see the beautiful rolling hills of El Rancho Verde, 45 kilometers north of Malaga.
Sam, Jaime, David, and driver
We spend the day walking much of the property and discussing details with Stewart Granger.
After three days of working in the field and offices of El Rancho Verde, Sam and I lunch in Torremolinos. He then flies to Zurich as I fly to A’dam via Geneva. The Amsterdam Marriott gave me their best room – 1131 – at their lowest price and… I’ve received birthday cards from them ever since!
On the 12th, Mito joins me from London and we drive to Frankfurt. I’m sick so we stay an extra day. Have an interview in Munich on the 14th and drive back for a meeting with Jerry Ratz at his office in Frankfurt on the 15th. He’s not thrilled with Pat Minihan; “He should be out meeting accountants.”
I rejoined, “That’s my concern, Jerry; you take care of leasing the boxes, and I’ll be responsible for the sales.”
And the sales continued to flood into Flims from all over Europe.
The “carnival” continues:
• Oct 17 – to Hamburg;
• Oct 18 – to Copenhagen – several recruiting meetings;
• Oct 21 – drive to Hamburg – more meetings, drive to Bremen – no rooms in the suitable hotel – stay in Hopper Motel.
• Oct 22 – to Brussels – more meetings - Atlanta Hotel.
• Oct 23 – Brussels - meet with manager of Brussels and Antwerp salesmen.
• Oct 24 – Credit Suisse agrees to do all banking for ERV. Drive to Zurich; stay at Hilton.
• Oct 25 – to Flims
Ferri was late with his rent from the second month. He had fallen 3 months behind by the second week of October. He was scheduled to have an important show of his work at a Manhattan gallery at the end of October. Working with my lawyer in Manhattan; I had the doors of the gallery bolted two nights before the opening. He paid, and the show went on.
Month Seven completed.
Recruitment and sales growing steadily.
The “carnival” continues:
• Nov 1 – Back in the car – Mito and I lunch in Luxembourg, drive to Ostend, flew air ferry to London.
• Nov 4 – Newcastle, Holiday Inn;
• Nov 5 – to Liverpool, Holiday Inn;
• Nov 6 – to London;
On the ninth of November, Mana tells me Sam has gone to Oklahoma City (?).
“What’s that about?” I ask. She didn’t know.
On November tenth, Henri Tschudi says, “There’s no money!”
“What’s that about?” I ask. He didn’t know.
That evening I have dinner with Atlantic Container Lines. “Can we help them with a little off-balance-sheet financing too?”
The whole point of container leasing is that the cost of containers is a burden the shipping lines don’t want to bear. So they lease them instead. Companies like CATU and TCS buy containers from manufacturers and sell them to investors at a good profit. So for people like Maersk or ACL (Atlantic Container Lines) they have the use of containers without having to finance them themselves, thus it is “Off-balance-sheet financing.”
November 12 – Sam calls me at 3AM, “There may be a problem. Go very easy with expenses.” He wouldn’t say more.
November 13 – I meet with John Templeton (he wasn’t knighted until 1987) in Claridges Hotel. He wants us “to sell Costa Rica.” No details yet.
Wikipedia - Sir John Marks Templeton (29 November 1912 – 8 July 2008) was an American-born British investor, fund manager, and philanthropist. In 1954, he entered the mutual fund market and created the Templeton Growth Fund. In 1999, Money magazine named him "arguably the greatest global stock picker of the century."
He was a lifelong member of the Presbyterian Church. He served as an elder of the First Presbyterian Church of Englewood (Englewood, NJ). He was a trustee on the board of Princeton Theological Seminary, the largest Presbyterian seminary, for 42 years and served as its chair for 12 years.
Templeton was one of the most generous philanthropists in history, giving away over $1 billion to charitable causes.
In 2007, Templeton was named one of Time magazine's 100 Most Influential People (Time 100) under the category of "Power Givers."
He was created a Knight Bachelor in 1987 for his philanthropic efforts.
On 8 July 2008, Templeton died at Doctors Hospital in Nassau, Bahamas, of pneumonia. He was 95.
Nov 14 – 16 – Usual meetings.
Nov 17 – Mito stays in London. I fly to Zurich, drive to Flims in the snow. Dinner with Henri Tschudi; he says, “Expenses have been too high.”
“Why didn’t Sam say anything?” I ask.
“He’s too proud, but I’m sure there’s more to it than that.”
Nov 18 – Meet with Sam. “Just take it easy.” That’s about all he says.
Nov 19 – Office work all day. Sam and Martha give a dinner party for Mana at the Waldek Hotel. Fun!
The “carnival” resumes:
• Nov 20 - Train to Zurich, fly to Munich – the landing is aborted and we make it the second time around! Dinner with Paul Serfort who has just recruited 8 salesmen in the Munich area.
• Nov 21 – to Frankfurt – two recruits; on to London.
• Nov 24 – Meet with Jerry Ratz – documentation slow from Flims.
• Nov 28 – Jerry Ratz – where is all the business?
• Nov 29 – Mito and I take the Hovercraft and drive to Brussels for meetings.
Month Eight completed.
• Dec 1 – to Dusseldorf for meetings. Sam calls to say Mana is having a breakdown.
• Dec 2 – to Frankfurt - meetings
• Dec 5 – to Zurich – meetings. Call from Minihan – Ratz is asking about the business.
• Dec 7 – Mito goes to Flims; I fly to London.
• Dec 8 – Meet Ratz, “What the hell is going on? We’re seeing very little business but your men are reporting lots of sales.” I fly to Zurich and go to Flims
• Dec 9 – Martha reports that Sam has had to go to court regarding misappropriation of insurance premiums.
o Seems like he has diverted the premiums from big oil field policies to supporting the Group and is in real trouble.
o Mito and I pack up everything we have left in Flims and drive to Zurich.
o I tell Jerry Ratz that the S.C. Welker Gp is disbanding but that we will continue to sell. We will need a new agreement to replace the old. I tell David Lund to get a company off the shelf, change the name to Edward G. L. Carter & Company, Ltd. – to trade as Carter & Company (UK), talk to Jerry Ratz, and draft a proper agreement so we can continue to make sales and build the sales force.
• Dec 13 – Ratz gets assurances from Sam that Sam will send him all the business he has been holding back and make up the shortfall in customer payments. We drive to London via the Hovercraft.
• Dec 14 – Work with David Lund all day.
• Dec 15 – Viewed a flat on Sloan Avenue to be our new base. Meet with Lund, and later with Ratz.
• Dec 16 – Meet with Ratz. Deal struck.
• Dec 17 – Jerry receives sales and 7500 pounds from Sam. Mito and I move to a flat at 74 Sloan Avenue, SW1.
• Dec 18 – Meet with Pat Minihan, John French and Frank Charlton. All OK. Lunch at Au Pere de Nico.
• Dec 20 – Get Christmas tree.
• Dec 24 – Mito cooking all day; big Christmas eve party at flat.
• Dec 31 – Mito goes to look after things in New York and I get ready for whatever is to come.
Month Nine completed – end of the S. C. Welker Group saga.
Thus ends a fantastic year. Jacques Sarli and Truman Anderson fell by the wayside for lack of determination and effort but I, with Mito’s help, persevered and built a dynamic sales force in several countries.
Sam’s tale is a sad one. I don’t think I ever saw him again. On top of all that, it turned out that El Rancho Verde was never given proper permission for the building of houses on the lots that they sold, and it too faded away.
My container business continued to grow and flourish with extraordinary moments and adventures. Hold on to your seats, I’ll try to guide you through the most amazing of them.
END OF CHAPTER TEN
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