Posts tagged ‘Ricardo Croes’

November 24, 2008

Back to the dustbowl


Well after a delayed ( and a long delay at that) return flight on Surname Airways and a ridiculous immigration line in Trinidad I am back on the ground and dealing with all that means. Peter P met me and he let me use his car to get home from his place and since my car is not fully serviced I am still using it. It was weird driving on the “right side” again but I managed at 1:30am when I was supposed to be back at 8:15pm the previous day. Cascade was normal looking until I rounded the curve and saw that the flood damage had affected my area. The security gates are stuck in the open position, all the vegetation was washed away and there were piles of mud everywhere.


My place is up on a hill so there was no damage in my living space but it was weird having to pass all the damage. I stayed at home on Friday as i had a lot of laundry and cleaning to do and did a quick trip to the grocery but that was the extent of my outings for the day. The mud on the main road has now turned to dust so Cascade feels like the place that the ABCs are normally. The irony is not lost on me.

I produced and anchored news on Saturday and just produced on Sunday so Giselle could do a perfect job of anchoring. Watching her read after 2 weeks was a great experience as I see how far she has come. I pray the Beeb does not snatch her from us as she is close to a perfect news reader now.


I still have to research Tobago and also Trinidad as despite living here much of the time there is a lot I have to get right as Fodor’s does not accept poor information and least of all my editors. This should be fun…I imagine my days will be very long between ieTV and Fodor’s for the next little while. Fun? What is that?


I will say, though, after this many years of doing this I really miss my friends on the ABC  islands including Susan at Bucuti, Ricardo and Monique, Rolando, Anabela and Bobby from the wonderful Pinchos in Aruba, Stephen in Curacao ( what a revelation he was) , Delno Tromp from Bonaire and many great people. I am truly a lucky guy to have crossed paths with such wonderful people and I am hoping to do so again next year. Traveling is a revelation as you realize that we are all very similar and that goodness and generosity of heart transcend national boundaries.Though Susan is now back in Miami I think I miss her the most as we have an intellectual connection and I consider her a friend par excellence…they don’t come along that often …I wish her the best as she pursues her dreams and I hope she knows that.

Tomorrow I hope to get the hearse back and I will commence my interviews here on Tuesday. Fodor’s T&T will slip in somewhere in between the ABC writing. It will all come together. Having traveled on islands that have no natural drinking water but have managed I am dealing with the fact my condo, on an island full of fresh water,  has no water at,  all with a rather circumspect approach. If I say I am on vacation it all seems amusing and somehow better. Bucket bath anyone?

November 6, 2008

I’ve died and gone to Bucuti


Well after a singularly uneventful and actually pleasant flight with Surinam Airways to Curacao, a rather boring 3 hour layover and a hair raising flight on a 10 seater prop I am in Aruba.Ricardo whisked me through immigration and customs and we headed to TGI Friday’s of all places for lunch. I dealt with it with the stoicism i normally reserve for Republican wins and even posed for a picture with the staff to be put in the newspapers at some point in the next few days. I really can’t say it is the milieu I really wanted to have immortalized in print but what can i say…i can sell out with the best of them.

From there it was off to my the Bucuti resort where I felt I was Barack Obama two minutes after being voted in. An attendant met me at the curb and walked me through to the Tara Suites reception area where they checked me in so quickly and pleasantly I was actually taken aback. Then co-owner Susan snuck up behind me and we hugged and promised to catch up properly after i recovered from my somewhat sweaty 10 seater experience. I was taken to my room and shown around by Mukesh the attendant/bell hop/guest services representative and then I was left alone to contemplate my room in all it’s environmentally friendly beauty. Quite simply it is gorgeous in the way that i would want to decorate my own place.It is sleek, comfortable, roomy and just plain stylish. The balcony…oh the could easily be converted into an intimate 5 table restaurant without fear of crowding and has a view that would knock Sarah Palin’s toque off. I am in love with a room. Don’t get me wrong I have always loved the Bucuti with it’s beautiful grounds, exceptionally friendly staff and green ways but this room was just short of heaven. 

I say just short because I tried to get WiFi and found that it said I needed a card which I could get at the front desk. I walked down and handy dandy Mukesh ( from Surinam no less) came up to me most concerned that I seemed to be in need of something. He told me that had I scrolled down the page i would have seen that I could just use a credit card. That was useful enough but he then offered to assist me and followed me up to my room, scrolled the page down for me and told me that in future I need not do anything so stressful as coming down to the lobby but rather just call and Tara Suites/Bucuti would be up to my room to help. With WiFi enabled I can now say with no doubt in my head that I have died and gone to heaven.

As a reviewer  for a major publication I am supposed to be objective …and honestly i am…it really is that good. Small wonder this place has over 90% occupancy year round. This is high praise coming from me when I say I would actually pay to stay here.

After puttering around in the interstices of the net I showered and went down to meet Ricardo for our dinner at Mr. Jazz a new Cuban restaurant/Jazz club on the scene. Considering it is on the second story of a mall they did a great job transforming it into a realistic jazz club including a huge stage. I had a pork dish ( of course) which was a bit salty but it is a traditional dish and maybe it is supposed to be that way. Then we were treated to live music as the Marketing Manager/Jazz singer did his stuff belting out 70s, and 80s standards while patrons danced the night away. This really is one happy island. I told Ricardo on the way back to Bucuti ( how I smile at the very word) that I am sure Zoloft is one of the sponsors of Aruba.