HOLMDEL/COLTS NECK, N.J. - Phileas Fogg would be proud.
Phileas Fogg is the protagonist in the 1873 novel 'Around the World in 80 Days' written by the famous French author Jules Verne. While Phileas had made a complicated wager with another that he could circumnavigate the globe in 80 days, a world traveling 'for sale' sign from Diane Turton, Realtors, could have given him a run for his money. The headline grabbing sign was lost during Hurricane Sandy in October of 2012. It has made quite a major comeback.
Thanks to Jannes Frank, 64, of France a a semi-retired software consultant who resides in Brussels, the sign was found. He found it on a beach in France. For Diane Turton, Realtors, already international in scope, they now have a new boast on the value of good signage.
Interestingly, the world traveling sign may have made several trips.
According to an interview with Oceanographer Curtis Ebbesmeyer in the New York Times, he said, "There is a great gyre of water that runs from New Jersey to northern Europe down to Spain and back to New Jersey and takes 3.3 year on average, and it takes about a year and a half to drift across the North Atlantic one way from New Jersey to France. So, five and a half years is just about right."
Founder of Diane Turton, Realtors, Diane Turton spoke to TAPinto and commented, "The symbolism is poignant. Real Estate is subject to shifting currents over time, and the reconnection to our sign reflects the strength of Diane Turton, Realtors to help our clients navigate the waters of national and international residential and commercial real estate."
Perry Beneduce, the company's marketing director received the communications from France. "I initially thought this has to be a prank" he told the New York Times. He was able to verify the accounts and the coordinates and 'Voila', case solved.
News of the wayfaring sign has spread beyond its moorings in New Jersey to the shores of France. It is now international news. "Having our signage wash up in France on the beach truly proves that Diane Turton, Realtors is a global real estate company," Beneduce told the Asbury Park Press.
Founder Diane Turton also spoke to People.com: “Sandy was devastating and we were right in the brunt of it,” Turton says, noting that most of the company’s offices are along the water. Now, Turton is planning to travel to France to meet with Frank and take the sign back to New Jersey. “It’s so rare that [Frank] would be kind enough to take the time to write the name down then go back on the Internet and find me,” Turton told People.com. “I want to bring the sign back so we can frame it.” She adds: “This shows that people still care. We were overjoyed. I couldn’t believe it.”
The famous Jules Verne didn't fashion his Phileas Fogg as a Realtor but if he did, a sign awaits with a penchant for travel.
Diane Turton, Realtors was founded in 1985 and has 18 offices in Monmouth, Ocean and Middlesex Counties with 425 sales professionals. They have offices in Holmdel and Colts Neck. You can visit their website here.