June 12th 2021: A personal message from Dr. Anthony L. Willis, Founder of ISLAND GIRL® Products: Truly, Life does happen while making other plans!
As stated in our March 2020 Newsletter we had entered negotiations for transfer of ISLAND GIRL® Products to third party investors and participating long term customers. I had planned to semi-retire in the Marshall Islands where I would continue participation with regards to online promotion via the Newsletter, and website maintenance but would also be involved in formulation and invention of products. Product Manufacture and sales would be done by the new partners in the company. I had planned to meet with the
principals involved in late April 2020 in Oxnard California, where some product mixing would be done and training in online sales procedures.
I planned to move onto my Gulf 32 boat and sail it to Majuro in the Marshall Islands
later in the year. Well fate , in the form of Covid-19 interfered with those plans!
Becauseof flight restrictions and quarantines, none of these plans were possible, and I continued the business through to June 10th 2020, when we were totally out of key resin ingredients and some other items.
After almost no sales from January to March 2020 (living off savings and credit), sales income during April and May were very good but not sufficient to surmount the accumulated expenses of buying materials and supplies, moving, taking on additional storage, shipping office supplies to Majuro and helping to support my adoptive family there.
Unhappy Christmas and closing of the business for over 3 months...
I finally decided that (turning 79) I was getting older by the minute and would just get a negative COVID test, and sail to Majuro, hoping to reason with their authorities that being alone on a sailboat for 3 weeks was the perfect quarantine. Over the previous months, the boat had been brought up to a safe condition for a long ocean voyage.
Just before Christmas, 2020, I was ready. With the help of a friend, the boat was provisioned with plenty of fuel, water and food. It was also loaded with product ingredients. labels etc and other cargo items. I closed the business down.
Then Fate struck again.... Carrying and stowing heavy items gave me a herniated disk and severe sciatica, so bad that my right leg was partially paralysed and i was in great pain. I was pretty much bedridden for weeks living off the food that I had accumulated for the saiing trip. Ironically, the weather for sailing was ideal!.
Long story short: I received good treatment at Kaiser with MRI and a spinal injection of anti-inflamatory steroid. I recovered, although I had temporaily lost weight and was very weak.
I properly mounted my solar panels and took to climbing the mast and other light exercises. I have had my two COVID vaccination shots.
In April 2021 I restarted the business , but selling just our cleaners and surface protectants. Then a miracle happened: I found a source of new resins for the surface coatings, that make MUCH better products and sales of the other products brought in so much revenue that I was able to pay up front for the resins.
That is the story up until mid June 2021, I plan to sail to Majuro on or about June 30th 2021, temporarily closing the business to resume again in August. Well, at least that is the plan........
Anthony L. Willis h.D