For years, we didn't own a car. We lived on cruise ships and in big cities like Paris and New York where a car was more of a burden than a necessity. Our move to North Carolina necessitated the purchase of a vehicle. My brother found a great bargain for us; a 15-year-old Dodge Dakota for sale by owner. The owner, an elderly gentleman, had kept the old red truck in excellent condition and put only about 75,000 miles on it during the entire time he owned it. We paid less than $3K for the car and it has served us well.
Sometimes my daily dose of motivation comes from the strangest sources. I take heart when I remember what a small world this is; it helps bolster confidence as we work to get our name and our product out there in the big leagues of media, retail, and the chocolate industry. For example, I have only one degree of separation between me and the Walton billionaires - a dear friend worked as a Walton family Executive Assistant. Knowing I’m so close makes that level of success seem all the more tangible to me. So, you can imagine my excitement when I discovered a Forbes magazine article about frugal billionaires. The story features people like Warren Buffet, Ikea founder Ingvar Kamprad, and David Cheriton of Google fame. It also mentioned a Wal-Mart billionaire: "Jim C. Walton, the Wal-Mart scion and member of America's richest family, has different taste in vehicles. He inherited his money--and spending habits--from father Sam. Worth $16.4 billion when we valued his fortune for the Forbes 400 list in September, Jim prefers pickup trucks to sports cars. Reportedly, he drives a 15-year-old Dodge Dakota.”
If it's good enough for Jim, it's good enough for us! I'll consider it today's sign from the universe that we're on the right path toward the life we have imagined. It's also a confirmation that frugality and luxury can co-exist peacefully. These billionaires don't skimp on everything. Each has his own indulgence from fish roe to designer ties to windsurfers. Their lifestyles underline the importance of balancing extravagance with economy. And that brings us back to bon bons, the perfect affordable luxury product. A sweet chocolate indulgence that won't break the bank. Undoubtedly, the preferred chocolate of frugal billionaires.