This is Part 3 of 4 installments. Click here for the first post.
In fact, Max said, it was a chance encounter with a stranger that resulted in “a most rewarding outcome.” He said that after World War II he was in the habit of spending the first part of the week in his New York office, and then taking a train to his Washington office on Thursday mornings. He was such a regular traveler that the porter on the dining car always recognized him and had a little table for one reserved for him, along with the morning paper and a cup of coffee.
One morning, the porter told Max that there were more passengers than usual. Apologetically, he asked if he would mind sharing his table with another man. Max assented, and he found that his new table partner spoke very poor English. He had just come over from Greece, and was trying to close a business deal involving purchases from the US Government.
Max told me he recognized how badly the man needed assistance, and devoted that entire day and many days thereafter helping him. This was the chance meeting that carried such a great reward.