CHAPTER THREE

Events that took place between the years 1994 and 1996

REFLECTION

After three years my life calmed down. I found much needed emotional and financial balance. During the last year, one issue was in the forefront of my thoughts and it had to do with the world of private enterprise.

I had the opportunity to get to know an important group of businessmen and managers. I learned about their background and that of their businesses. On one hand I learned that it was not difficult to build a business that would work and that would have the infrastructure so that, with a manager capable of seeing just a little further than the others, its business potential would be significantly increased. In this way I have seen some companies double their volume of business by taking advantage of an opportunity. And these seemed to occur a lot at that time.

I had to link these thoughts to Gatsby. He had the ability to see things that were yet to come, as if they had already occurred. He appeared to be able to read it somewhere. He also did not let an opportunity go by without taking advantage of it. Gatsby and business success appeared one and the same thing to me.

I also noticed how businessmen and managers spent significant amounts of money dealing with the outside world. This money came from the businesses. They also had competent employees at their service.

Then I saw it clearly. The problem had been laid out badly. The fact that Gatsby's enormous requirements had all been placed on a single person was a mistake. An entire organization was needed to replace the work that I had been doing. It had been of such magnitude that it had broken my will.

On the other hand, Gatsby's qualities stood out significantly when they were compared with those of those managers. Some of the businessmen that I got to know did not have a very high moral stature and it was offensive to me that they would have access to greater facilities than Gatsby had.

Only one thing managed to upset me, particularly during that last year. When I got up in the morning I had the impression that something in me was being changed. I had the sensation that the spiritual side of my brain —this is how I explained it to myself— was being modified in some way. I recognized how subjective all this was but it was a sensation that was especially bothersome for someone as suspicious as I was. I soon realized that there was nothing I could do and I forgot about it.

THE REUNION

I wanted to hear from Gatsby. During 1994 I gave him the opportunity to contact me. In autumn of that year we spoke on the phone and soon afterwards we met. He traveled to meet me. We were in my car and another car overtook us very fast on our right. We watched it calmly.

"I know that you don't like me saying these things, but that man is going to die in an traffic accident."

"No, Gatsby," I looked directly at him, "I don't like it. Of what use is it for me to know that?"

I found that he had changed a lot, he was stronger, more compact. There were no reproaches about the past. I understood him and him me. He talked to me about his professional evolution, about his previous jobs and how he had improved professionally. He was now working at a well-known consulting company. He also mentioned to me how he met his current girlfriend.

By the manner in which he was telling me about his experiences, I realized that Gatsby had turned into a kind of shark. He took advantage of any opportunity to advance that presented itself in any sphere, as if it were a climb where the only thing that mattered was getting to the top. In this sense he had no real attachment to anything.