When I was first married we moved to the small, but rapidly growing, town of Port Elgin, Ontario. Now known as Saugeen Shores, the amalgamation of Port Elgin, Southampton (where my first daughter was born), and the area surrounding the two communities, Port Elgin was then both a popular tourist destination and a bedroom community for many of the workers, both construction and operations, at the massive Bruce Nuclear electricity generating plant just to the south.
I started my first formal brick and mortar business there, The Henrys’ Rockshop and Bookloft, a two storey structure converted from a two car garage with workshop and the apartment above, all of which was attached to our home, the former residence of Dr. Tom Earl, physician.
The merchandising business was a success and I branched out into a field that had interested me for some time. I opened my own Private Investigation Agency, with the help of a former RCMP officer and the Port Elgin Chief of Police, Leo Straus. Leo had become a good friend and supporter of my efforts. He also guided me through the beginnings of evidence collection and crime scene photography.
Leo was the one who taught me about the concept of pay it forward when I asked him how I would ever pay him back for all he was doing for me. He’d had a mentor when he began with the RCMP. Now he would be mine. Thanks Leo.
For me it was the beginning of an impressive, and continuing, climb into the workings of business. I never really wore the harness well, being more of a free spirit, a Mustang, but it was great training, none-the-less, and I never looked back.
I do remember one piece of advice I took from an up-and-coming singer by the name of Barbra. It’s sage advice for anyone taking on big tasks, career moves, or significant changes in their lives. I think it translates succinctly to, “Keep moving!” Sir Winston put it so elegantly, “Never, never, never give up.”