Elon Musk’s interest in — some might even say obsession with — financial services harkens way back to a wad of lost traveler’s checks.
In Walter Isaacson’s new biography of the tech titan, titled simply “Elon Musk,” the reader joins Musk, at 18, exploring Canada by Greyhound bus. The future founder of Tesla and SpaceX has left behind his native South Africa and a frequently unhappy and sometimes abusive childhood.
Musk’s parents, estranged from each other, separately gave him small stakes to start life in America, which included a detour through Canada. His father’s contribution was $2,000 in traveler’s checks.
Musk was making his way to a cousin’s house via a meandering, ultra-local bus when he took the opportunity at one stop to grab some lunch. He had to hustle to make the bus again, catching it just as it was pulling out.
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