We were numb, there was so much to consider but so little point in some ways.
Immediately after leaving the Professor, we ran into JB as he was leaving his surgery, we briefly related what had happened and arranged to meet him first thing in the morning.
I made phone calls to the girls and sent notes to many friends. These were strange times and we had no idea how to deal with what was happening.
We had a business in its infancy, it had broken even in the past 12 months but our debt levels were sky high and we were still spending over $10,000 per month in promotional costs.
We had been building for the future, but what if there was no future?
Did it make sense to keep going? should we close things down? Or; should we cut things to the bare basics and hope the goodwill of existing clients would be enough to keep us going?
Turnover is low in real estate, people stay in their home for years so resales for existing clients take years to happen.
Did we have enough goodwill from our relatively small client base?
We had been in business for less than three years after considering the time for set up and, the lag between promotion, enquiry, listing and first sales. We had the goodwill from approximately 120 clients we had successfully sold for. Would this be enough to sustain a viable business if we stopped all expensive business promotion?
There was also the question of my day to day health. My balance was shot to pieces, my vision was not great, the headaches were persistent, I was tired and my resistance to any bug or flu was almost non-existent.
Was I well enough to keep going under these circumstances?
We met and chatted with JB, it was a warm and very personal meeting, discussing the meaning of life and possible death.
We were about to leave when JB asked if you had any questions.
“I do have one”
“Does this mean the arsehole can get a disabled parking permit, I am sick of paying his fucking parking fines?”
JB looked at me and winked
“That is so Chinese, Billy”
“Well, we have to look at any good that can come from this”
JB said “I can fix that for you right now”
We all laughed; light-hearted moments like this can take the edge off even the worst of times.
We had a coffee before you headed back to work, life looked a bit brighter and; probably because there was really no choice, we decided to continue with the business in a much-reduced state.
At least that way, there would be something to resurrect when I was feeling better.
We could only hope goodwill would be enough to tide us through the dark days until the drugs started to work, if indeed; they were going to work.
If they didn’t work, nothing much mattered, anyway!
Thank God you were there.