Durrant celebrates 50 years selling cookware
For the past 50 years, Junius Durrant has been selling cookware to Bermudian families — and he has no intention of slowing down.
On his 84th birthday yesterday, Mr Durrant said: “I'm just about as excitable now as I was on the first day. I have really enjoyed the ride.
“I started in 1968 and it has been an extraordinary journey, really. I don't even have the thought of stopping yet.
“This is something you can do as long as you want. There is no age limit, as long as you are able to communicate.
“I don't see any reason for me to stop yet. The good Lord above will let me know.”
Mr Durrant said he started working for Saladmaster after answering an advertisement in the newspaper.
He said: “I was working days and wanted to do something extra. There was nothing about cookware, nothing about Saladmaster.
“It was quite a while before I got a reply, asking me to come to an address on Parliament Street.”
He went to the offices of the Adderley Brothers, who had brought the Saladmaster business to Bermuda.
Mr Durrant, a respected former cricketer who played on the Somerset Cup Match team, said he was immediately interested in the cookware because of its health benefits.
He said he was taught how to sell the cookware by international saleswoman Joan McWhorter, who brought him to several demonstrations before inviting him to lead one.
Mr Durrant said: “The first one I did was a disaster. She said I was all to pieces, but you do one. You do two. You do three and you're used to it.
“It's about showing other people how they can better themselves through better nutrition and cooking.
“Not everybody is going to buy, but if you like meeting people and you're open and honest, you can be successful.”
Mr Durrant said that, for a while, Saladmaster had displays in the MarketPlace stores, but for the most part he met customers through in-home demonstrations and referrals.
He said: “Bermuda is a small island, and you would think that after a while you would cover the island.
“Now people have had children who have come up using this type of cookware, and we get phone calls from them when they are getting married or coming out on their own.”
Mr Durrant said his favourite part of the job was being able to meet and talk with new people.
He said: “You can learn about all different aspects of life from talking to people. You meet people of all walks of life, of all nationalities.
“I was told in my training to never prejudge people. Never say you are not going to talk to someone because you don't think they will be interested.”
Chris Nahatis, president of Massachusetts-based Saladmaster Distributor, hailed Mr Durrant's years of hard work and dedication.
The 95-year-old veteran salesman said: “Junius is a very, very fine salesman.
“He has been very loyal, always honest, and he has represented Saladmaster well for the last 50 years.”
• Those interested in organising a demonstration are invited to call Junius Durrant on 236-4522