Meet George Kratochwill, the Technical Director of Bimmers Clinic, Inc.
George, as you all know by now is Hungarian. What most of you don't don't know is just what an exquisite Hungarian he is. When you and I look at Bimmers we think we see his personality but what we see is solely the reflection of his background. No not all Hungarians are as clean and neat and organized as George. No not all are as hard working or a perfectionist as he. But then he is Jurica (Gyurika) as we pronounce his name in Hungarian.
He came into the world to face a devastated Europe trying to revive itself from the Second World War and grew up in the pains of Communism. Today the harshness of communist life reflects on everything he does and says. When we look around this shop the outsider may say to him or herself that George has done well for himself and is basking in gold. On the contrary. George neither makes much money nor has time to bask in it. He simply left a very backwards and gray world behind him and now works hard to surround himself with what he thinks is colorful and modern. Careful not to take anything he owns for granted. Each thing he purchases looks brand new even after if it has been in existence for at least a decade.
Having no TV he spent his time as a young man hovering over the comforts of a radio; searching distant lands and listening to forbidden sounds of European and American music. Now he makes sure music is abundant both at home and here at Bimmers. George's parents formally renounced communism and outcast from all, they lived a life of simplicity, dignity and total devotion to their son. George was surrounded by books, beloved by teachers but had to keep his mouth constantly shut to politics. He graduated from high school with honors but was not accepted to college. You are not communist; you don't get into college. Simple. With much maneuvering on his mothers part, he was accepted into an Electrical Engineering Institute. A disciplined individual he did very well and graduated with an Electrical Engineering degree.
George and Vera
In those days the Trabant, East Germany's luxury car, occupied the cobblestone streets of Budapest. The upper echelon communist was on the road. Somehow George got into his head that he was able to repair these cars. And one by one he did. With the help of his parents the three of them would huddle around each car until it was repaired. The garage was small, not heated, and having none of the comforts we enjoy. Through winter and summer they repaired. The cars came. George made sure the job got done perfectly so that politics would not interfere with his earning a living for himself and his family. At a young age he was able to earn enough money to buy his parents a home. The comrades kept a keen eye. Next came the car. He bought himself a Polish made Fiat! Not one of his peers had a car or could afford to dream of earning enough money to buy a car in the near future. So
George fixed and pampered the Fiat and paraded his car around town. More came to get theirs repaired. He was constantly disillusioned for wanting and expecting more from life and he was jealously guarded by acquaintances.
"Uncle John", a war pilot, had at a young age made his way to America and the scarce photos that snuck their way back to George's family home gave George the hope he needed. With colorful oratory, Uncle John provided George with the dangling carrot of all of George's dreams. With a great deal of maneuvering, George too eventually made his way to America. Today, as Bimmers slowly grows so do the possibilities. The cold, the unhappy faces, the gray clothing, and the gray clouds were not for him. He wants sunshine, colorful clothing, plenty of laughter, and lots of music. His cautious attitude, sense of responsibility and perfectionism are his means of survival, then and now. This influence has kept him on a steady straight ahead course. Bimmers keeps going. One more color is added and one more tree has been planted. One more client has been satisfied and one more friend has been made.
How he made his escape onto this shore will be told. Full of humor and adventure it is an interesting story. The escapades of a foreigner in a foreign land. Not a word of English spoken. Only a briefcase for luggage. Here he is. One step at a time... But a word about perfection. Why strive so hard to be and have everything so perfect? Acceptance. To deliver a less than perfect work does not earn respect, friendship and loyalty in a land he considers perfect for his needs.