February 28, an employee of James, who along with her two daughters had lived with the McDonald family and worked in their tea shop but who had recently left off living with them and were presently staying with the elder of James church and his family, called to tell me that I should meet with this elder. When I inquired why I should meet with him, she wouldn't say. I asked her if I could first meet with her.
A meeting was scheduled for March 2. She and her two daughters visited me in the morning. I had had a discussion with James around the middle of January and told him that this mother and her young daughters were working far too many hours. From what I had seen with my eyes and heard from my daughter, “Kiska,” who worked together with them in the tea shop, it was clear to me that they were being overworked and would soon become overly exhausted and quit. I was told that other families had come to work and left, so I believed the pattern would continue with this family if something was not changed.
During this meeting, this lady told me why she and her girls had moved away from James. Her father urged her to leave in haste because he feared for their safety. I was dumbfounded to hear this. I still believed then that the McDonald's were upright people. (I remember thinking that this lady was right. I needed to talk to the elder of James church who I believed was very close to James. If anybody would know anything it would be this elder). Sitting here and telling me this was a mother and two daughters James had said he had rescued from Hurricane Katrina and provided them with jobs and allowed them to live in his house.
She wouldn't tell me what James was saying about me, only that it was not good. I promised to call the elder to schedule a meeting with him to try to get to the bottom of this. Whatever could be the problem? Why was James saying bad things about me? My sales far exceeded anything James could ever have dreamed. Was he still angry at me for informing others that I would become the new owner of the magazine? But he told me I could talk to others about it in order to forge partnerships. I knew from the past several years that relationships and partnerships were important in this market if you wanted to succeed. Needless to say, I and my family were puzzled.