Traveling back to America, I met a girl named Gulla at the Icelandic Airlines ticket counter. She gave me her home telephone number. I had a stock brokerage firm in Wall Street and I had fallen in love with Iceland and wanted an Icelandic girl to work for me. A few days later, I called. Gulla introduced me on the telephone to Hafdis Einarsdottir. Hafdis came to work for me the next day. In fact, John Lindsay, the Mayor of New York City, had coincidentally organized a reception for Bobby Fischer on that day. As I was a friend of Fischer, I received a special invitation from the Mayor's office. I took Hafdis and introduced her to Mayor Lindsay, Bobby Fischer, Simonar Palsson and other notable personalities.
After a few months, Hafdis told me that she had a friend who wanted a job. Her name was Johanna Baldursdottir. She was from Thorlakshofn. I gave her a job. Then, I hired yet another Icelandic girl, whom I found myself, named Inga Brandsdottir. So, now I had three Icelandic girls. I felt like I was in paradise.
In the Summer of 1973, they all abruptly left. I was never sure exactly why. I just went crazy. I had to get my Hafdis back. I was completely obsessed with her. I could not go even five minutes without thinking about her. I hired another Icelandic girl named Helga Thorvardarsdottir, but that did not do any good.
I did something ridiculous which I have always regretted. I filed a court case against Hafdis, plus Johanna, Jerry Bannon, and a guy at Icelandic Airlines named Benny Jonsson. I alleged a conspiracy by them to destroy my securities business.
This was really a stupid, bogus lawsuit, but I just had to do something to get Hafdis to pay attention to me. Actually, there was some remote basis for my suit. I had been sued by the S.E.C. at about the time that Hafdis was working for me, for failure to keep adequate books and records, which was the job of Hafdis and Johanna. The case went to trial in December, 1973. I called Hafdis as a witness. Her name is published in the law books as a result. You can look it up, S.E.C. vs. Sloan, 369 F. Supp 996, 998 (1974). I doubt if Hafdis knows that her name is published in the books.
The reason I have always felt so bad about this is that right after this, in January, 1974, Jerry Bannon got run over by an airplane. You got that right. JERRY BANNON GOT RUN OVER BY AN AIRPLANE, an Icelandic Airlines DC-8, at JFK Airport. He was squashed as flat as a bug. I have always believed and will always believe that I killed him. Jerry was a maintenance man working for the airlines, underneath the aircraft, on the ground crew. I believe that he was so upset about this problem that I was making for Hafdis that, in a moment of inattention, he fell underneath the airplane and got squashed. He had been riding on the tow bar.
I realize that this belief of mine is purely irrational. Nevertheless, 23 long years have passed since these events of 1974, and I think about Jerry Bannon getting squashed by that airplane an average of once a week. I never think about Hafdis any more.
One resolve I made from this is never to get into a fight with another man over a woman.
As for Hafdis, she got a job working for Icelandic Airlines. She went in America by the name of Heidi Simonarson. Her father's name was Einar Simonarson. Only tonight, by browsing the Internet, I found her. Nowadays, her name is Hafdis McDowell and she lives, according to the World Wide Web, at 1404 Orange Street, Melbourne FL 32951, (407) 728-5889 and (321) 728-9883.
Sorry to bore you with this long story.
For photos of Iceland, see: Sightseeing in Iceland.