Nemat Ali was a 15-year-old on an adventure when he made the 6,000 mile journey from Pakistan to Moray in 1954.
He arrived from Faisalabad to the Lossiemouth home of his uncle Ghulam Muhammad with little more than the 10 shillings in his pocket.
Mr Ali, who has died at the age of 76, went on to become a well-known businessman and never left the Moray region.
He began his working life by going door-to-door selling clothes out of a suitcase.
After establishing himself and moving to Buckie, he grew up with his clientele, developed tremendous loyalty from his customers and blossomed into a highly successful businessman.
He set up Buckie Furniture Centre in the town’s West Church Street in 1982, and the business is still in the family, with his son Zafar now at the helm.
The local entrepreneur also had a special affinity with Elgin. He set up Elgin Drapery and also won numerous awards during his time as a restaurateur with Naseeb Indian Restaurant in Elgin and Nemat Tandoori in Buckie.
He also had the Ballerina Ballroom in Nairn.
But on Easter Monday, the grandfather died unexpectedly – a year to the day after his wife, Manira.
As well as Zafar, Mr Ali had five daughters – Taseem, Simra, Tara, Farzana and the late Shabana, who died last year aged 34.
Mr Ali jun said his father had a nose for business and a thirst for knowledge, and “never stopped” learning.
“He was very well-known,” he said. “They called him ‘Mr Buckie’. He was a great businessman, a great educator and was on a full-time apprenticeship — he never stopped learning.
“His clothes came from the warehouses in Glasgow. He was selling clothes to the fishermen and the young girls in Buckie that they could not get in the local shops, so they could go out and wear modern stuff at the local dances.
“He was selling girls in Moray the hot pants Lulu was wearing singing in London. When people would go to the dances in Fishermen’s Hall, at Ballerinas or Two Red Shoes, all the girls used to be asked where they got their outfit from. They would
say ‘I got it from Ali’, then as he got more famous they knew him as Nemat.”
All the way from Stonehaven to Aberdeen and on to Nairn, Mr Ali used to sell clothes in halls across the north-east.
“I don’t know how he did it to be honest,” added his son. “He stayed here all the time. Most of the Asians that come in these days move to big cities, but my dad came to the north, and never went anywhere else.”
The amazing experiences of Mr Ali were captured in the book Scottish Memories: Immigration Stories, which was published last year.
Mr Ali’s funeral will be held in New Elgin Hall yesterday.