5th Avenue-Here We Come!
On a sunny Thursday morning, I was heading to my first day’s appointment on 5th avenue.
When I was preparing the documents, I noted the borrower was 93 and a current restaurant owner. Quite an achievement at any age, let alone for a 90-year-old.
Walking into the lobby of the building, a doorman and a concierge immediately began jumping to attention. After exchanging pleasantries, I asked for Martin Rossi in apt 37E. After a quick ride up the elevator, I started ringing the apartment door.
Wow Wow Wow!-Hotie Hotie Hotie
Meeting me was a very tall attractive 30ish-year-old. After introducing herself with a warm smile and tight jeans, Julie began leading me to the study. I was expecting a 90-year-old, not a vibrant model. Once again, my trekking travels were eye-popping. But, I must be honest, the scenery was pretty good. As I walked the apartment hallways, meeting me were mementos and press clippings. My brain was percolating as I knew this closing would be unique!
The Ascot In The Corner Chair
Sitting quietly in the corner was Mr. Rossi. This flamboyant 93-year-old was very fragile. He was wearing a white shirt with a red ascot around his neck, sitting in a big leather chair behind a large oak desk. I felt like I was walking into a movie set of a time long gone. Appearing before me was Mr. Rossi holding court, awaiting an audience.
Upon entering the room, Julie immediately planted herself to the side of her employer. In a split second, I witnessed this attractive assistant’s long warm, affectionate kissing of Mr. Rossi’s cheeks. Martin was smiling and sighing like a young teenager in love.
What, for Heaven’s Sake, was Happening Before my Eyes?
This young striking assistant was blushing and whispering into her employer’s ear.
Julie was indeed an extraordinary sidekick! But was she; a nurse, a companion, a girlfriend, a kept woman, or all of the above? I kept nodding and smiling as I tried not to stare.
As always, I never asked direct questions; I just observed. I must admit I had difficulty keeping my wits about myself-this time. Mr. Rossi wanted to talk. He started by telling me he owned 20 high-end restaurants in NYC, LA, and San Francisco. The storytelling continued; Mr. Rossi began as a busboy working his way up “the food chain.” It was apparent all Martin Rossi wanted to do was to share his life and talk. For the moment, I was a captured audience. At the same time, Julie intently listened to every word like she was hearing it all for the first time. Yet I bet she had listened to every word 100’s if not 1,000’s. Julie kept smiling and holding “her boss” hands tighter and tighter.
Martin kept recounting how he held court in his restaurants, from city politicians to high-ranking mafioso.
John Gambino-Mayor Koch-Joe Namath-Frank Sinatra-Marilyn Monroe
He told me the papers all over the office were press clippings of celebrities he befriended through the years.
Martin directed me to the framed pictures of Frank Sinatra and Marilyn Monroe and an autographed photo of Mayor Koch of NYC. Mr. Rossi’s eyes were glowing brighter as he recounted story after story. All as if every yarn was only days ago!
One of the pictures had Marilyn Monroe adoringly holding Mr. Rossi’s hands and kissing his cheek. The similarities to the current picture of Julie and Mr. Rossi were magical. Julie was Mr. Rossi’s modern-day Marilyn Monroe! I was not sure if I was reliving past glories or current glories. The signing of the papers continued with Martin going on and on about his past. Julie never let go of Mr. Rossi’s hand as she kept smiling.
Mr. Rossi was indeed a charming man about town. I would never know if Julie was an assistant, lover, or both. The Stories were real, and Mr. Rossi’s tales would only continue. Whatever Julie’s official position, she is part of a man’s ongoing life history.
As I left, Julie handed me an envelope thanking me with a charming smile.
Today Another $100 Tip and Another Unreal Closing With a Lifetime of Stories.
No doubt, Mr. Rossi had many colorful trekking adventures. I smiled as I walked into the sun on 5th avenue. We all have varied and different trekking adventures.
This Man About Town Had Stories That Could Fill Multiple Lifetimes.
The journey from world trekking to notary trekking and the lessons learned continue.- reinvention, discovery, and keeping it real.