About Graffiti and My Vacation with Captain Lafitte

GRAFFITI AND VANDALISM. The recent graffiti vandalism impacts the feelings of safety, property values and the well-being of our island, NEGATIVELY. And this is why all graffiti must be removed from public view immediately after they appear, otherwise the trend may become an invitation for more vandalism. If we don’t remove the text, it means we don’t care, and it becomes an invitation for more, and worst, like broken windows. We should all be asking Public Works to commit to freeing us from the offensive lettering, because graffiti vandalism in unacceptable. Remember that the vandals  have repeated their message many time, so that we “recognize” the message instantly. By removing the text as soon as possible we deny them the “glory” and “satisfaction.” TOTAL CLEANING: Please visit the rotonda at De La Sallestraat with a bucket of paint.

NORMAN KUIPERI ABOUT ALL INCLUSIVE. Norman published a well written article in AweMainta: http://www.awemainta.com/papers/AM160528/index.html, page 28, and asked for feedback. In his article he makes a good argument about the money earned by the hotels selling their services, leaking out of the country, and not benefiting us. But that is typical to the hospitality industry. You book a room direct with Marriott.com or Hyatt.com and the money goes to a central pot. Then the company settles its own accounting internally. The only thing you can hope for is that the companies report their income accurately and pay their taxes, that’s the best you can expect. As I said before: “We operate in a very fragile environment. The financial world as we know it is based on our own mutual goodwill, on our eagerness to comply and act well, for the greater good, so we can help keep this system going.”

I only had one all inclusive experience in my life. Club Med Cancun. The first night was ok, we met lots of people and told them about Aruba. The following morning trying to relax on the beach, the GO, the Gentle Organizers tried to get me to play beach volleyball, and rocked the pool deck with Hula style party dancing. We left at noon, heading south in the Yucatan Peninsula, and drove, and drove until we got to La Posada Del Capitan Lafitte which at the time was a cluster of hammocks on the beach, we stayed there for five nights, full pension, breakfast, lunch and dinner, because there was nowhere else to go within a reasonable drive, and were very happy away from civilization and organized activities.

So in principle, Aruba doesn’t need all inclusives, because it is safe and fun to explore, but the public wants it. So give them what they want and since you are dealing with reputable operators, you may trust they will give the government its share. It is in their interest to do so! If Aruba goes down the toilet, their business goes down the toilet too.

What I want you to worry about Norman is the following: We are a nation of minimum wage earners. You know hospitality doesn’t pay high salaries. How are we going to pay our national bills with so little income directed into government coffers? We need to diversify, away from hospitality. Into some caliente industry. Come up with the idea, Norman.