Every year around the beginning of July, Peter Shepherd would receive a letter from Australian Paper Manufacturers marked ‘private and personal’.
Bert Cotton was furious as he loved opening everyone’s personal mail but he was reluctant to open PS’s letter. So too was Con Kolokas, PS’s assistant. He somehow learnt that the letter contained information about an important Paper Conference on new technology to be held in Tasmania over five days in August and of course PS should be there.
So each year this letter arrived and off went PS to Tasmania. Meanwhile Con was asked by an APM employee as to when he was going to get a trip to Tassie. Con then became aware that it was a Paper Workshop – not an important conference identifying new technologies.
Still each year that letter would arrive and off PS would go to Tasmania. Finally PS’s wife booked a trip that coincided with the ‘conference’ letter’s arrival at State Print.
Peter Shepherd was furious that his wife had booked the trip without his approval and contacted his mate at APM in an attempt to hold back the letter until his return.
Unfortunately for PS the letter was in the post and due for arrival on the Monday when he would be on leave. PS told Con that if a letter was to arrive from APM marked to him to place the letter in his draw until he returned. Con received the letter and was tempted to open it, but held back. On the Wednesday, Con couldn’t hold back, grabbed the letter and showed it to Arthur Holmes, head of planning.
The cat was out of the bag. Arthur thanked Con and phoned APM and said in future address the letter to him and added that Con would be going in lieu of PS. When PS arrived back at State Print he asked Con where the letter was.
Con replied was that it was with Arthur Holmes. Peter Shepherd was absolutely beside himself about losing his annual “freebie” to Tassie whilst Con was ecstatic.
Their relationship was, let’s say cool from that day on! Con never stopped smiling.