Working With Passion

On a recent trip to Europe, Mommy Dearest joined us for closing night at the opera and a little retail therapy, celebrating her 80th birthday.

News of her arrival reached our friend, Andrea Mazzocato, who manages The Merchant of Venice perfume store in Verona, Italy. Exhibiting quintessential Italian hospitality, he welcomed The Birthday Girl with a bottle of champagne (and an espresso for me) and spent the better part of an hour sharing the history of The Merchant of Venice brand.

Andrea shares a magic moment with Mother.
Andrea shares a magic moment with Mother.

Beyond salesmanship, he also detailed the history of his store’s serious collection of Murano glass and recommended off-the-beaten path sites and secrets of the Veneto. My mother was delighted, enchanted and inspired by Andrea’s passion for, and encyclopedic knowledge of, perfume, the Veneto, and Italy.

It was, to say the least, a memorable afternoon.

It reminded me of a few of the emails I receive in which readers inquire about how to make a lot of money. The Old Money Book isn’t about that, but this encounter with Andrea compels me to offer this one piece of advice: find something you’re incredibly passionate about and do it.

Andrea’s passion allows him to effortlessly and sincerely develop relationships with people, not just sell perfume to customers. And that makes a world of difference.

If you read this blog at all, you know that I rarely endorse products. But when you encounter a sterling example of a commitment to excellence in a retail setting, it simply has to be acknowledged.

Thank you, Andrea. And happy birthday again, Mother.

  • BGT

8 thoughts on “Working With Passion

  1. Very inspiring, Byron. I hope your mother had a wonderful birthday. ( She gets to celebrate the rest of the year, you know!)

  2. Happy Birthday to you mother, Byron. Along with everything you write about here, I am so inspired by people who at this age are still traveling and enjoying life, possibly still working. My in-laws are the same. Again, while not old money, they worked hard their entire lives and built a nice home, live very comfortably, and are still going and doing at 83 and 84 years old. Both still taking care of their home, which is impeccable, nicely decorated with lovely things that have memory, mowing their own lawn, fixing things, golfing, and just a good old do-it-yourself, frugal, Yankee attitude. And yes, I do acknowledge a commitment to excellence, in any line of work. Sadly, it seems to be more and more rare these days.

    1. Thank you, Bev. I’ll pass along the birthday wishes to Mommy Dearest. We’ll keep that commitment to excellence alive, one day and one small action at a time. – BGT

    1. Ha! Mommy Dearest does read the blog, but she couldn’t care less about who knows her age. But every child has to know their own mother’s rule on this very important issue. 59 it is! – BGT

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