C’era una volta. . . once upon a time. . . Max (Massimo Melani) met Wally (Walter Sanders) in Firenze. Here’s the story in their own words.
First, a few words about the Leather School: Workshop, Laboratory and Show Room of the finest leather goods situated in the old Franciscan monastery of the Santa Croce Basilica in Florence. It was a marvelous place, as were the splendid people working there.
It all started with the Patron Marcello Gori, the owner and director of the Leather School.
Those years in the early 1970s were characterized by a kind of elite tourism. And the Leather School attracted many of these well-traveled, wealthy tourists from around the world. Marcello Gori ensured that his sales and service personnel were first class as well. The staff was multilingual, elegantly dressed, rather good looking and with long experience abroad. I was one of those.
One day in 1972, the owner presented us a colleague, an American boy from Chicago—a certain Wally Sanders, very smiling person, who looked like a survivor from Woodstock or San Francisco–absolutely the first foreigner who was going to work with us.