Butcher Boy ( Part 10, Mr Patel)
We started to unload the stuff, it took about an hour. There were cases of corned beef everywhere, not only was it heavy it was bulky as well. Each case weighed over 35lb or 17 kilos. The garage was full, the cutting room at the back of the shop was full, we couldn't get any more in the walk in fridge. Everywhere you went there was fucking corned beef!
I took a van load round to my Mum and Dads house and put 20 cases in Dads shed. Roys brother took another 25 cases and stored these in his lock up in Poplar. The Plaistow shop took about another 30 cases. By the end of the day we had managed to get it all out of the way.
Gaz and his mates took the lorry away, with the driver loaded in the back, still tied up. He said he would take it to a trailer park about 30 miles away and then call the old bill a few hours later so they could find the poor old sod and let him out. As he drove off Gaz shouted to Roy that he would be back in a few days to get his money.
Now the hard work would begin, who the fuck would want 1500 giant tins of corned beef?
Now the great thing about Roy was that he had front, he had more front than fucking Brighton!
He decided to go along to a cash and carry that he used from time to time in Bow. He wanted to see what the price was for these catering tins of corned beef. He couldn't start selling them until he knew what they were worth. He also had to agree a price with Gaz, he couldn't do this either unless he knew what they were being sold for.
While he was there he thought he'd take a chance and ask the owner if he wanted any corned beef. Bit risky as the hi jack had been in a few papers and also a quote from the poor driver who said he been threatened with his life. Not quite true!
He asked one of the girls on the tills if he could speak with the guvnor. She pointed to an Indian man called Mr Patel. Roy came straight out with it no beating about the bush. He simply said he had aquired a large quantity of corned beef and would Mr Patel be interested in buying any?
Mr Patel took Roy to his office and they agreed a deal there and then! Mr Patel owned 6 cash and carries in the UK, he supplied most of the Asian supermarkets in East London, Birmingham, Bradford and Leeds. Like a lot of Asian business men, Mr Patel only dealt in cash!
When Roy came back to the shop later that day, his face was a picture. "We've had a right result today Joe, you'll earn yourself a nice few quid for helping out mate".
I remember saying to him " You're the jammiest sod I've ever met. You've got more Jam than Harleys!"
Over the next few days, Roy and me moved the corned beef to one of Mr Patels wharehouses. Roy hired a 7.5t lorry and it took us 4 trips and all day. Micky looked after the shop along with the old part timer, as I said before Micky had no real taste for this kind of stuff, he just wanted to get on with the Butchery work. Me? I loved it!
Gaz came by 4 days later. I think he was expecting Roy to ask for a bit more time to pay up. But Roy gave him a cup of tea and then paid him out in crisp new pound notes!
Gaz walked away a very happy man. Roy had made a nice few grand over just a few days and i was given £500 for my bit.
The corned beef job turned out to be a big turning point for Roy, it proved to a lot of people that he REALLY could get shift anything! Gaz was very impressed and must have told a few people, because after that we started to get more and more strange characters coming into the shop with all sorts of deals.
Mr Patel was also going to play a big part over the next 18 months!