Saturday, November 30, 2013

How I met George at Friar Park (part 1)

So, I wanted to post this yesterday in memory of George, but I just didn't get it all typed out in time.  But I am sure that you all can agree with me that we should remember George all of the time.  And so here is the first part of a story about a nice girl from Poland who met George in 1976 at Friar Park.  I typed up part 2 (found at the end of the story) a while back and was wondering where the first part of the story was, and now I know!   

What really strikes me is that Renata Frankowska was able to walk through the front gates of Friar Park and onto George's property three separate times!   I always thought that those front gates had been locked since George first moved in.  Why did he leave them unlocked?   He was so fortunate that no one crazy came in during this time.  

It also strikes me that I read all the time that George wasn't friendly to fans, that George disliked them, etc. I think this blog has proven that theory to be incorrect. George was so sweet to Renata. He signed 12 autographs for me and posed for countless photos. He stood outside and talked to her for a long time.

When you read this story, please keep in mind that English was not Renata's first language, and some of the grammar and syntax are incorrect. I purposely kept things as she had originally written them because I wanted to keep her enthusiasm intact, and I felt that if I corrected all of her errors, it would take away from the story. 

This first appeared in the April 1977 issue of "With a Little Help From My Friends."

How saw George and how I got into Friar Park
Renata Frankowska – Poland

I wish I was a poet and could write everything about what happened in beautiful poetic words, but although I am not a poet, I’ll try to do my best!

I came to England on Friday, the 20th of August, 1976.  I came alone, but a Polish lady, my mum’s friend, was waiting for me at the airport.  Her husband gave us a lift home, so soon I was I the Swiss Cottage in London (I lived in that lady’s flat for almost two weeks when I first got there).
My dad came to London later than I and phoned me from the hotel.  He came to Swiss Cottage and helped me move to the hotel where he was staying.  It was a beautiful hotel, called Elizabeth hotel, not far from Harrods.  It was in Indian-Arabian style, a bit mystic, very colourful.   I moved there, and we decided to go to Henely the next day.  What else could I do?

So we got up very early the next morning, went to Victoria Station and then got the bus to the goal of our trip – the Holy Place – Henely!    I was very excited and nervous, and was sitting very impatiently.  Oh, my God always when you go to Henely, there’s this special kind of feeling and excitement.  God only knows what can happen there.

So we were going there, through Maidenhead, the beautiful M-4.   The weather was beautiful- sunny, blue sky and very hot.  And finally we were in Henely.  Oh, I was so nervous and I “saw” George everywhere.  We started to go up the hill through Hart Street and then we were standing in front of George’s beautiful property – Friar Park!  As always, beautiful, very silent and empty, as if nobody was living there.

And this warning sign:  “Private Property.  Trespassers will be prosecuted.  Beware of guard dogs…”  Doesn’t sound too nice.   When I was standing there, so nervous, scared to move on, scared to go inside, I decided that this time, I will risk everything I have.  If they throw me out, if George throws me out himself, if the dogs bite me or not, I have to try.  I have to go in.  My dad blessed me, said many warm words, encouraged me and I went in.

You can imagine how scared I was going through Friar Park, waiting for somebody to throw me out or for dogs, but nobody seemed to be around.  I passed Harold’s house and was moving slowly up to his home.  Slowly because I was so scared I could hardly move.  I could hear the roar of the wind through the trees and the beat of my heart which was beating so strong and fast then!
I knew the way, as I had been there in 1973, and I knew that I would have to go near another house, in the middle of the way, between Harold’s house and George’s house, there’s a house – very similar to Harold’s  I don’t know who lives in that house in the middle, but I was scared that somebody could see me and stop me.  But no, everything was all right.  And suddenly between the trees, I saw George’s home and my heart started to beat faster as upon the house I saw a flag with an aum.  It was yellow and the sign was red.  I remember one newsletter from the club saying that probably, if the flag is up, then the master of the home is in!

There was a small hope in my heart and a big joy that maybe he is in, that maybe I will be lucky enough to meet him personally, after all those years of waiting with hope that maybe my dream will come true.

So I was moving on and soon I was standing in front of George’s front door!  I was shaking so much.  I was so scared.  The place in front of the door changed a lot since 1973 – there was a tablet on the ground (marble I think), a sort of calendar or something, some inscriptions here and there and a man’s bust, don’t know who he was, made from white marble.  It all looked very beautiful and mystic.  I didn’t write anything.  I was too frightened to do it.  And farther, at the right side of the home, I saw well you remember the “gremlins” from the All Things Must Pass album?  They were staying there!  They’re so nice and sweet!  At the door (beautiful door, wooden and carved), there was a bell, a sort of a big jaw with the green marble button in the middle.  My hands were cold and wet from fear, but I decided to ring.  I was shaking, but I rang.  Nothing.   I rang again.   And I heard some steps on the stairs.  I wanted to run at first, but I subdued the fear and stayed.  The door opened and appeared an Indian man (who later I found out was Kumar Shanker, a relative of Ravi’s).   I told him that I’m George’s fan and that I came from Poland and I asked him if George was at home.  He said no, George was on holiday in Sweden with Olivia, of course, and he didn’t know when George would come back.  I told him that I don’t believe him.  And he said, “What do you want me to say?  Lies?”  I said no, but I really wanted the truth, and explained to him how hard it is for me to get to England, and that I was in Henely three years ago but I didn’t get to meet George.  I told him how important it was for me and asked him to help me.  But he said that really, George was away and he didn’t know that date of his return.  He advised me to write a letter to George from London and ask if he would see me, and if George answers, it will mean he “wants” to see me.  I was feeling sorry, but what could I do?  Mr. Kumar wasn’t too nice, anyway.  I mean he was a bit cool.  He apologized to me for not showing me the house but he said he couldn’t – it wasn’t his home.  I asked him if I could take some photos of the house and park but he said that if I respected George I shouldn’t do it.  So I said goodbye and started to go back. 

I really do respect George very much, but I was taking photos while I was going back.  I knew I shouldn’t’ have been, but you never know if you will be able to go there, inside the gates, ever again.  And it was so important to me.  So I took some photos.  Well, I was coming back so sad and disappointed, but it was my first day of staying in England and I had two months in front of me, so I had a sweet hope that I would see George anyway. 

My Dad and I decided to stay in Henely for the weekend, as the weather was fantastic and we both love Henely very much.  So we stayed in the Red Lion Hotel, near the bridge and the Thames, and spend two really nice days in Henely, visiting the town, walking by  the river, drinking tea in one of those sweet Henely teahouses  Henely is really a nice place – little, sweet, full of flowers and trees and beautiful little houses, gardens, coffee houses and small pubs.  There’s a fantastic atmosphere in Henely, especially on the weekends when people get together in the market place near the Town Hall, and there’s a fantastic observation place to see the cars.  I think the atmosphere in the town and on the river, where people swim and have their own small boats – it is so good because of George.  You know that he lives there – his castle reigns over the town and it’s his town.

So, as I said before, we stayed for two days in Henely and then had to go back to London to arrange my school and hostel.  My Dad advised (God bless him for this!) to go to Henely again, on Wednesday, to see if George is back  I wasn’t sure what to do, if I should go or not, because I thought that if they see me there again, they would think, “oh it’s her again!  She is hanging around again! What a nasty girl!”  And that they’ll say that to George.  But I decided to go – you can see George in the street, in the car at least.  

So we got up early again, and from Victoria Station through Maidenhead, we went to Henely.  The day was as beautiful as you can imagine – bright sun, blue sky, and nice smell in the air.  Just great!

It was Wednesday, 25th August 1976
From London, I took all the presents for George and the photos to sign and some things to show him, so I had many things with me.

We were in Henely about 12:30pm, and went straight to his property.  And again, I was standing in front of Friar Park, scared, nervous and shaking.  And then, my beloved Dad said that I should do something, not just stay, shake and wait for no one knows what. He gave me that advice, and it was a good idea, really!  Because I was corresponding a bit with Janet – Harold’s daughter, George’s niece – he advised me to go and knock on Harold’s house and ask for Janet.  Of course, I wanted to see her, but I was so absorbed in waiting to see George that I couldn’t think about anything else.
I decided to do it.  Of course, I stood there half an hour scared before I went in.  I knocked on the door,.  Soon, the door opened and there appeared a tall young boy (about 15-17 years old) with an earring in one ear.  I told him that I came from Poland.  I am George’s fan, and I asked if George was at home.  He said he didn’t know if he was in.  Then I asked about Janet and it turned out that she had gone on holiday to Wales.  And suddenly, he shouted to somebody inside, “Father!  Renata has come!”  So you can imagine how surprised I was then, and I thought, where does he know me from and that my name is Renata?  But then, I thought that he surely had to associate Poland and a girl writing to Janet, so that must be how he knew my name. 

Soon at the door appeared a man who turned out to be George’s brother, Harold! He was very nice and kind to me and we were talking for a long time.  First of all, he told me the most important thing – George was back in England, but went to London on business.  Oh God, I was so happy to hear that! I remember Harold saying, “What a pity George isn’t in.  He went to London.  You could see him and see the park and home.”  I was surprised when he said that! It seemed he didn’t mind talking with me and taking his time, and that he could be helpful in that way.  We were taking for a long time about a lot of things.  It was so nice to talk to someone who knows George personally, lives next to him and to get the information from someone who knows something for sure.  Amongst other things, he told me that Pattie wanted to come back to George and at the time, the divorce wasn’t on the way; he told me that Olivia is Mexican, not Greek, and he told me that on the cover of George’s next LP called “33 1/3” will be his dad and the gremlins!  And, it was true!

I took some photos of Harold in front of his home and car, and also I asked him about George’s illness.  He said yes, George was ill and many people were coming and asking about his health, hanging around the Park, and it was nice of them.  At the end of our talk, Harold said, “You know what?  Come again at 4:00.  Maybe George will be back, so you could see him.”  Oh, I was so surprised again!  I asked if George wouldn’t mind that or get angry, and he said no, he wouldn’t mind – never.  He doesn’t mind seeing the fans.  I thanked Harold and I ran to my dad with the joyous news!  And I was really running!  When I told him what Harold had said, he was very glad and said that I should buy a present for Harold to repay his kindness and help.  So we decided to buy him an elegant bottle of Scotch whisky.  And then, I sat on the bench near George’s home and I was waiting.  It was about 2:30pm, so I had plenty of time.  Oh it lasted ages!  Every moment I corrected my make-up and hair and I had to smell like the whole perfume shop, although I don’t think that anything can help me.  I wanted to look my best.  To crown all- a bee stung me on the leg and it hurt and looked terrible, but it was worth suffering and I didn’t care that much about it. 

I was praying all the time to be able to see George, to meet him, and I was trying to remember everything I wanted to tell him.  I was so excited, nervous and shaking again, that I started to forget English completely!  I was waiting and waiting and nobody came in, so I was sure that George hadn’t come back from London yet.

It was 4:00 and time to go to meet Harold.   I crossed myself and went in.  I knocked at Harold’s home and he came out.  Immediately I asked him, “Did George come yet?”  But he said “come on.”  I asked again, “Tell me – is George at home?  Did he come from London?”  But he only said, “Come on come on” So, I thought, and was almost sure, that he wasn’t back yet.  I gave the present to Harold, he said of course that it wasn’t necessary and we started to go through Friar Park, walk through it.

To tell you the truth, I have never seen such a beautiful place in my life.  Composed with such a good flavor, full of beautiful trees and flowers, shrubs.  These wonderful great lakes, waterfalls…  There’s a small boat on one of the lakes and Harold said that George sometimes swims in the lake.  During the way to George’s home there’s a beautiful home almost hanging on the rocks which is George’s tea-house.  We were passing lakes, flowers, small romantic bridges, small houses, trees, and I was so charmed and moved when I was going through the park I thought how much I wanted to seei t, how many times I imagined myself walking through here, and I thought about all my friends who wanted to see it so much, and still I couldn’t believe it was true I was there!

We stopped sometimes and I was taking photos, and then we stopped in front of a cave.  Harold wanted to show it to me, and I was so surprised.  Why so much favour for me, why?  We went down into the cave and I thought that I was in a Disney film.  I’ve never seen a place like this!  Water everywhere and around it—sidewalks made from stone and the same with the banisters, but imitating wood, beautiful stalactites and stalagmites and small tunnels and it was all made from beautiful white-grey very shiny stones.  Harold told me it wasn’t natural, it was all made especially for George.  There was electric light in the cave – here and there, small bulbs giving off violet light.  It looked as if it was ultra-violet light.  Unfortunately my flash broke so none of my photos taken in the cave turned out.  

Harold also told me that the whole Park flowered and became beautiful since George moved in, and that George had a lot of work to do with it, as the lakes had been very dirty and neglected.  About the cave, he told me that the gremlins were found in this cave and that Kumar Shankar repaired them and takes care of them now. 

We were nearer and nearer to our goal, and suddenly, I saw George’s home in all its beauty!  When I looked on the roof, I started to laugh as there was a pirate flag on the mast!  Harold laughed too, and said George has several flags – including the Union Jack and they changed it just for fun.
I wasn’t all that nervous during my way to George’s home as I was almost sure he wasn’t there.  Harold didn’t mention a word about it.  I started to be more excited, more nervous the more we were coming near George’s home.

I was taking many photos, and we found ourselves just near George’s home.  And again, I saw the gremlins and I smiled and took a photo.  During that time Harold left me and went inside the home.  I looked there, and behind the window pane, I saw the outline of a well-known face, but couldn’t see perfectly.  “Oh no” I thought.  “It’s impossible!”  

I was staying there almost stiff from fear, looking at the ground, and when I looked up again my heart stopped for a moment – somebody came out – and IT WAS GEORGE!!!

I was so shocked that I completely forgot English!  I didn’t know what to say!  I was standing there shaking, excited – my heart raged and I was completed stupefied!  But  I was fascinated.  He was beautiful.  Here he was, in front of me, in reality, not in a dream, not on film, but – in reality!  I was waiting 8 long years for that sublime moment!  I caught hold of myself and said, “Oh George, I can’t believe it.  I can’t believe I can see you in real life!”   But George only smiled gently, shrugged his shoulders and said in his beautiful Liverpudlian way, “I’m just like anybody else.” 

And again – emptiness in my mind - - everything I wanted to tell him, through all those years – all my thoughts and feelings, all I even wrote and prepared on paper to tell him – everything had gone! I still was sure if this was a dream or not so I pinched myself a few times quite strongly to make sure.  It hurt so it was true!  It was incredible.  My dream came true!

George was still smiling, gently and nicely and he looked at me.  I finally said, “I don’t know what to say.  Can I take some pictures of you?”  George looked at my camera and said in a sweet way, looking down at it and taking it in his hands, “Oh, what a nice camera.  “I have seen this funny expression on his face, very boyish and sweet many time sin “Help” and “A Hard Day’s Night”.

“Oh, yes, my father bought it for me.  But my flash doesn’t work.”  I said.

“You don’t need a flash” answered George.

“I know I know, “I said and my voice was shaking, I mean it was trembling.  I asked him again if I could take pictures and he said, ‘Yeah my brother will do it. “He looked at my bag, a plastic bag with his picture on it.  He picked up and said, “Who is this?”

“It’s….it’s you, George,”  I said, and George smiled.  He moved on a few steps and then stopped as if waiting for me.  I left my bags, gave my camera to Harold, who was still standing near us, and I stood near George.  I looked at what he was doing and he put his arm around me!  I was shocked again!  I could feel the warmth of his hands o my shoulder.

I thought, “Why couldn’t I do the same?”  So I looked at George and wanted to ask him for 
permission, and I asked, making a gesture as if I wanted to embrace him, I only said, “Can I….?”  But he said in the middle of my sentence, “Sure, of course.”  I put my arm around him, very gently.  I was so scared!  But then, I touched him a little bit stronger.  I felt his ribs.  I could tough him, and it was great!  I said, “Oh George, you’re so thin!”

“I know!” he said with a pleased voice, as if he was pleased that he was so thin.  I think this moment is seen in the picture where George embraces me and I him.  

I remembered that during taking photos the face should be to the sun, not the sun behind the head, so I said, “Face to the sun please, George,” and I started to turn him around, gently holding his arm.  He tried to restrain a smile.  He often used to do it.  And Harry took another photo.

Then, George kept asking me how I got to England, was it difficult to get here, how they let me go, so I explained everything to him.  In one of the moments he started to laugh and said, “Why do you repeat ‘socialist’ country and ‘capitalist’ country?”

And I said, “Don’t laugh, George, if you came to Poland, you would see how different is our country from your country.”  He asked me how long I will be staying in England.  “I’ve got a visa for 2 months, but maybe I will be able to stay about year.  You see, I would like to study English, take English courses, you know, and I’ve got a house – a room in a special house for girls, for foreign students, so maybe I will be able to star until June.”

“Do you have a school yet?” he asked.

“Well, we were looking for a school in Peter Street in London but you see there are many pornographic things all around soo…”  I shook my head and looked at him significantly.

“Nooooo…..”  George made a very wry face, hearing it.

“So we were trying to find another one.”  And then he asked me, “Where will you be living during that time?”  and making a roguish, but beautiful face and grinning, he looked at me with the grinning eyes and said, “In the Red Lion?”

I was very embarrassed, and couldn’t stand his look, so I felt I was getting red and I looked down and said, “No, not in the Red Lion, but in Hampstead.”

He smiled and asked, “Aren’t there any schools in Hampstead?”
“Well, there’s one but it’s very, you know expensive.”

“Expensive, yeah…” repeated George, lost in thoughts.  I forgot to say that when we were talking about Poland, how I got to England, George said something about our government and that it should give us more freedom, and I loved the way he said “government” with a heavy, Liverpudlian accent.
And then Olivia came.  George looked at me, then at her and said gently, pointing a hand at her, “This is Olivia.”

“Hello!” she said, smiled and grasped my hand.

“Hello!  I know you, you know, from pictures. “ I said to her.  She brought a packet of cigarettes for George (I don’t know what kind of cigarettes, but it’s seen in the pictures –a blue small box near his feet).  I looked at her.  I think she’s beautiful.  I was very surprised when I saw how thin and tiny she was.  I didn’t think she was that thin.  And she turned out to be far more pretty than I thought she was.  Completely without any make-up, with beautiful dark skin, really beautiful black shining hair and black eyes.  She was beautiful.  I wish I was here. 

George smoked a cigarette (looking fantastic with it!  It’s stupid but I always wanted to see him smoking).  And I said, “Oh George, I’ve got so many presents for you.”  George looked worried and said, “Oh, you shouldn’t do that, you don’t have to bring anything.  It’s not necessary.  You gave me so many things already.”

“Why not?”  I wanted to give you something.”  I said and started to hand him the presents.  He looked like an uncomfortable child, but looked at the presents and kept asking, “What’s this?  What’s this?”

I was explaining to him what everything was.  I brought several presents, and among them were – Christ head-sculpture, made from gypsum – reminded me of George himself; and Chopin’s record, and a box of chocolates, some viewcards of Poland, etc.  He was so sweet, standing there looking at presents and asking, “What’s this?”  When I told him, for instance, that this is Chopin’s record, he repeated, “Chopin’s?!?!”

You know, you can see him watching the presents in that photos where he is along, squats upon the packets and trying to explain something.  In his left hand, he holds some viewcards of Poland which he started to look at.  When I gave him the chocolates he asked again, “What’s this” and I said, “It’s something sweet for you.”  And then, I remembered, that yet I have to thank him very much for all the cards he wrote to me, for the Indian books I received to me in October 1975!  So I said, “Oh George, thank you for all your cards.  I still got them.  I have them with me, left them in London.  And thank you very much for your beautiful records, “Extra Texture” and the single.
“I was the single ‘You’”? asked Olivia.

“Yes” I said, “and the LP Extra Texture.”

“Beautiful, aren’t they?”  asked Olivia and smiled.

“Yes,” I said. After I thanked him George said, “Yeah.”

“How did it happen George, with this record?”  I asked.

“Well, it was just sent t you that’s all,” he said modestly., trying to finish the subject as soon as possible.  But I didn’t want it to end so I said, “But why?”  I was afraid that you would think that I was asking for it or something.”

“Of course I knew you weren’t asking, not at all.” Denied George.  “I just thought that you sit there, sad and alone in your room, and that it can make you happy.”  Another shock!  What would you say?  Oh, I was so moved, I felt the tears pressing against my eyes, but I subdued myself and said “Oh, thank you George, you’re so good…you are too good to people.”
“oh no” he said.
“Yes you are.  Why are you so modest?”  I asked.
“I can’t still think….I…I…I…”
“Yes, of course, but why so modest?  You know that you are deep thinking, good, thoughtful man and beautiful,”  I added quieter.

“Oh no…” he said casting down his eyes, looking very embarrassed.  “You shouldn’t say that.  I don’t like it when people say that.”  And now I was embarrassed.

And then I took out a bundle of photos of him from my bag, and said to him. “I’ve got some picture of you to sign.  Will you sign them please?”  

“Yes, of course,” he said.  And poor George set to work, as he had to sign several photos!  He squatted, took the ball-pen from me and looked at the photos and started to sign them.  I looked at hm.  He was beautiful.  Far more beautiful than I thought he was.  When I saw him for the first time I was surprised that he was so thin, so slim and so very tiny.  I knew he was tiny, but didn’t expect that so much! I squatted too, next to him, so I was near him while he was signing the photos.  I was admiring his eyes.  Very big, bigger than in photos, almost black, with many, many black incredibly long lashes, surrounded by black, splendid brows.  His eyes not only divine but so soulful, deep thinking and sweet.  When he was looking at me, his eyes were warm, really warm, friendly and good, apart from the moments when he was talking very seriously.  I don’t know what made his eyes so warm and friendly when he was looking at me.  Maybe he liked me a little bit? Maybe, but why?  Anyway, it was so nice and sweet and I felt the warmth and joy in my heart when I looked at him.  He was so kind, nice and good to me and so friendly!  I felt as if we had known each other for years!  I looked at his face.  Slim, with a beautiful nose and sweet wonderful mouth!  He moistened it often as it was dry.  And his teeth – white and wonderful.  But his smile was the most beautiful thing, just after his eyes.  Really George’s smile.  I mean when he smiled you knew it was George Harrison and when he smiled, always very sky, sweetly and openly I thought that the sun shined all over the world!  His hair was curly, but shiny and unfortunately covered his great brows. He looked healthy and relaxed.  He wasn’t as thin and tired looking as in 1974.  I was very glad about it, as I’d heard about his illness.  In his ears he wore very small diamond earrings, and of course, there was a “collar” on his thin and long neck.  Besides the collar, he had a medallion on a gold little chain.  When I asked him what that was he said he had the Yogi Brapupate or somebody (I can’t remember) inside.
George wore light beige, very smart shirt and similar colour trousers, girded by decorative belt with the Dark horse buckle.  On his feet he had on Indian sandals.  He looked fantastic and as always he was very clean, neat and smart.  I was observing him.  Oh, what a spirit feast for eyes!  I think he felt that I was watching him but was pretending that he didn’t know.  But very often, while we were talking, when he noticed that I was not listening only but also watching him, he became more shy and shyly cast his eyes down and smiled in a special, cute way.  And it was so sweet and nice!  So, as I said before, he started to sign the photos.  And it was so great and funny as he was asking me where were they from.  When he saw a photo from “Help” he said “oh, Help!”  There also was a photo from “Magical Mystery tour” and one, bought from the Harrison Alliance.  That one is George looking tired and dreamy with a bit of beard from about 1968.  Personally, it’s one of my favorite photos.
Harold, who was standing near us, took the photo, looked at it, and said, making a wry face, “Isn’t it a horrible picture?”

“Why?  Horrible?  It’s beautiful!  So natural!”  I said.  George looked at Harold, at me, smiled and didn’t know what to say.

George liked one of the photos.  It was a photo which was on the badges in England.  He has a mustache, beard, about 1971, really fantastic one, so when he saw it he said delighted, ‘Oh, that’s nice!”  I started to laugh a bit, as it was nice.  Among the photos there was also one taken about 1970 also from the Harrison Alliance, of George with very long hair, beard, mustache, looking down, where he looked like Jesus Christ.  I love this photo.  And I said, “In this photo you look really like Jesus Christ.”

“I’ve never seen him.”  George said seriously.
“Oh well, of course, I know you’ve never seen him, but you can imagine him, can’t you George?” I said.

“Yes, but I imagine Jesus quite differently.  I imagine him as a blond, with blue eyes, and none of the people on earth can identify with him.”  George said.

I felt stupid, but it was the whole George!  Finally he signed my 12 photos.  Then I asked him to sign especially prepared for this occasion, a memorandum book, and he wrote, “to Renia love George Harrison, England 1976.”  He also drew an aum sign by his name.  And it was so nice of him to write “Renia” not “Renata,” just the diminution of my name.  And it was so nice of him to remember it.  I also brought from London lots of pictures from his U.S./Canada tour of 1974, photos taken by Pat, Kris, Kay, Joy and others.  There were about 40 ones of the best of a huge numbers of photos from the tour.  He never saw them, so I thought he would like the idea.  I said, “I’ve got some pictures of you taken by my friends during your tour in America.  Would you like to see them?”
“Yeah,” said George.

“How did you get to kow the friends?  By pen-mail?”  asked Olivia.

“No, you see through the Harrison Alliance.” I said.

“Yeah, the Harrison Alliance,” said George with a smile.

“Why did you do the tour during the winter?  There was a lot of snow and frost.”  I said.
“You see, it was very difficult..” said George.
“You had to cancel one concert in Cleveland.” I said.
“What about the next tour?  I’ve heard of it.”
“Yeah.  I was working on an album, but I was sick.  Did you hear about me being sick?”
“Yes, my friend wrote me about it.  But what happened, George?  Was it poison or something like that?”

“Yeah, something about the food.   It lasted three weeks.  I was sick…” said George making a wry face and gesturing.

“Oh God!  But it’s all right now?”
“Yeah.  And I was making an album.”
“What will be the title of it?”
“33 and third…you know the speed of the record.”
“Oh yes, your brother told me about it.” I said.
“and I had to cancel the tour…” said George.
“When will you go?”
“I don’t know yet.  I’m making an album now.”
“For how long?”
“About ten days.”
“Ten days?”  I said, disappointed that he could leave in ten days.
“And then?”
“Then I’m going to America and to India.”
“For how long?”
“Til January probably.”
“Oh, til January,” I said, disappointed again.  Yet I had a visa for two month only!  “Please George come to Poland…”

“Oh yeah, it’s very difficult to go to countries like Poland.”  And he said something like “You know, the government won’t allow me to tour there It’s very difficult.”  I don’t have to say how I felt!  Oh I forgot to say that when Harold was taking photos and Olivia came, I wanted to have a photo with both of them, and told them so and then George said to me, “You in the middle.”  I was so embarrassed that it is even seen in the picture.


  1. What a typing job!!! I can't read it right now (i'm at work :(
    , but i will read it as soon as I get home! I just couldn't let this effort go uncommented on! C'mon, people, let's chip in for a hand massager for poor Sara!!!!!!

    Can't wait to read it!

    (and I hope you had a great holiday!)

  2. Thank you so much for typing all this out and sharing it, Sara! It really is a wonderful story (and re-confirms with what kindness George treated others... I can imagine how much his genuine interest in other people and him taking the time to talk to them meant to fans who had a chance to meet him). Thank you again for posting this.

  3. Ohhh, it breaks my heart so much that he isn't around anymore. I so wish I could've gotten to see him before the gates were closed, before he died... :'(

  4. I wish I could meet George Harrison for real just like how she did it!���� I fell in love with him when I was 12 years old.

  5. the smile was always the best

  6. If I were to meet George Harrison for real,I would faint and feel butterflies in my stomach at the same time.

  7. I wish I could spend more time together with George Harrison to have coffee/tea. It's too bad πŸ˜” that he's dead nowπŸ˜”. I truly love him😍😘😍😘😍;-)::-) like he's my favorite Beatle as always and forever. Every time I drink iced coffee, I always have a Beatles George cup glass because he's my favorite Beatle 😍😘😍😘😍😘😍😘😍😘.

  8. Che storia meravigliosa! Tutti avremmo voluto essere Renata ♥

  9. My George glass broke downπŸ˜”πŸ˜”. George is always been and always be forever my favorite Beatle πŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ˜˜πŸ˜˜πŸ˜˜πŸ˜˜πŸ˜˜πŸ˜˜πŸ˜˜πŸ˜˜πŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ˜˜πŸ˜˜πŸ˜˜πŸ˜˜πŸ’œπŸ’œπŸ’œπŸ’πŸ’πŸ’πŸ’πŸŽΈπŸŽΈπŸŽΈπŸŽΈ. I am sure that he is looking down on me wanting to sing and play guitar with me.