Bati Bleki Buzz Weekly Recap November 4th, 2018

Real peace is accompanied by love, compassion, justice and forgiveness

Sunday afternoon saw a substantial group of locals, dressed in white, carrying white balloons, walking solemnly from the Ritz Carlton roundabout to the beach police station on Palm Beach.

The procession moved slowly behind a giant banner dedicated to Camilo Alejandro Carreno Sosa, 22, who lost his life violently on Sunday, September 2nd, at 3am, stabbed in the parking lot behind Soprano’s with his identified killer still at large.

The community noticed recently that some billboards went up in strategic places asking for the public’s assistance, in capturing Ryson Paskel, 19, accused of the heinous crime.

The walk, escorted by the Police, culminated with Camilo’s mother call for love, compassion, justice and forgiveness. She asked her fellow-islanders to show tolerance and patience, and heal the recent wave of teen-violence with kindness and empathy.

She is an exceptional woman, as she talked about healing holding her baby grandson’s hand, Matthew, still too young to understand his dad is never coming back.

As the procession went by Playa Linda Beach Resort, store employees, restaurant waiters and hotel workers lined up both sides of the street in solidarity. It was a very emotional moment.

May Camilo’s memory be a blessing, and to his family members and friends, please accept our sincere sympathies.

We read the unfortunate incident report on line, at various media outlets, but when a news item assumes the form of a grieving, heroic mother, a fatherless baby, a saddened and despaired community, all attempting to deal with an inexplicable loss, it becomes a personal matter, and it matters.

While the local Police never reached out to the grieving family, and to date failed to located and arrest the fugitive, we want to hear from the MinJust that apprehending the suspect is the #1 priority on his list.     

ATECH Conference 2018, and the winner is:

The ATECH conference was smaller this year, this is not a form of criticism, it is a statement, and it was also much shorter, and more compact.

Apparently, the organizing team was unaware of the ballroom renovation project at the Hilton Aruba Caribbean Resort & Casino, and when they realized their ‘home’ was not available they scrambled to move their successful event to the Renaissance Conference Center, squeezed into a one-day format.

Next year they promise, in the redecorated Hilton Ballroom, the conference will go back to its previous size with a more interactive layout, an expo, breakout rooms, and a more extensive menu of speakers.

But overall, ATECH 2018 was well attended, we still learned a lot, and had a good time.

The startup pitch competition included two Aruban entries for the first time. Their ideas were both brilliant.

I liked the Keto Clinic, from Aruba, aspiring to develop simple low-cost dietary interventions that can be used as a treatment for Obesity, Diabetes, Epilepsy and Metabolic Syndrome. They basically want to teach us to eat less, and teach our bodies to burn more fat with the help of a digital platform.

Hi5 Solutions, from Aruba, provides businesses and governments a trusted system for identity validation and document sharing to meet their compliance requirements. What this means is, that just one AWG 5 Censo paper, stored on line, can serve you for the rest of your life when you are dealing with various GOA departments. Your ID info is stored and validated, ready to use.

I liked Sea Going Green, I thought she would win, her platform promotes sustainable tourism through sustainable business. She is a consultant to tourism companies with marine related activities. Her app maps the marine environment, so you could for example know in advance where to anchor your boat and where the snorkeling is best.

I also liked LocalAventura, that is a curated platform for booking authentic tours all throughout Latin America. In the age of Over-Tourism, this platform allows us to connect with passionate local guides for off-the-beaten-path experiences.

Finally, findSisterhood, an anonymous social network for women, out to create a safe space for women to share their personal stories and find their strength with the support of other women. The safest place on the internet to share what you are too ashamed or too shy to tell elsewhere.

Not surprisingly, FINDSISTERHOOD was the winner of the startup pitch competition and awarded the $10,000 grand prize!

You Want to Make a Sex Tape? Don’t.

An explicit sex tape popped up on my phone this weekend, a grateful naked woman moaning, a determined naked man pumping. He is looking into the camera, held over his head in admiration, like he invented the wheel.

The sex tape was spliced into a mock commercial, introducing the new Serlimar director, coming to us from Curacao.   

Character assassination, I thought.

Someone got mad they did not hire him, and decided to produce a special sweet welcome for the newcomer.

In a press conference the following day, the pumping man captured the bull by its horns. He said the video was 12 years old and has haunted him since; he said he was pained by the so-called scandalous revelation, and that the person in the footage was his wife at the time.

Most importantly he said, the video will no hamper his ability to be good at his job.

Serlimar is definitely in need of a leader, a leader who is capable of managing people. If this guy has the people skills required, and the management background, then welcome to Aruba.

Lesson learned: You Want to Make a Sex Tape? Don’t.

Also, don’t ever lose your phone, if you have X-rated materials on it.

The MinJust VS the Headliners

I recently mentioned to you that the Dean of the local Lawyers’ Bar Association had asked the media to tone down its in-your-face style of reporting. He called for respect of privacy and asked to crack down on explicit pictures of blood and gore.  

In response, the MinJust then asked the media outlets for a meeting, where a protocol was to be signed spelling out the Media’s Code of Ethics and Conduct.

But while this goodwill was circulating, and the spirit of kumbaya lingered on the horizon, the MinJust also sent the Police searching for a number of stolen/missing communication devices, and not surprisingly, the agents showed up at the homes of select local media members.

Otherwise how can you explain that the media often shows up at accidents and crime scenes before law enforcement??

Bingo. They found some. And made a number of arrests. How did valuable Police equipment get into their possession, that is a good question! Shouldn’t they just be listening to their own devises. The technology is readily available for sale on the market.  

Immediately, the Headliners, that is how the ambulance-chasers call themselves, declared from jail that the spirit of kumbaya dead. They are not signing anything, and will not be shut up, this is all a political conspiracy against the free press and the freedom of speech.

This spectacle of outrage in the public sphere, polarization and heated rhetoric, definitely reached our shore.  

Linda Shapiro, fondly remembered

Writer, publisher, humorist, world class crossword puzzle expert and linguist, Linda Shapiro passed away just recently, and her funeral is today.

As an American living in Aruba, Linda made it her business to know everything and everybody serving as an ever-helpful resource to visitors. She published one of the first magazines on the island and later joined the editorial staff of various publications, to contribute stories about life Aruba, from cocktail recipes to local traditions and personalities.

She was for many years the unofficial to-go-to Aruba expert.

Linda published a number of cookbooks, the classic Aruba Cooks, in 1997, available on, and later on in 2004, Just Desserts. benefiting Animal Rights Aruba.

When searching on line I came across a small news item that cited her as the patron of Cowboy, an injured wild donkey, who was taken into the Donkey Sanctuary and treated for his injuries, thanks to Linda’s generosity.

Dogs were her favorites always, and she contributed tirelessly to their well-being on the island.

She frequently held court at the now defunct Le Dome restaurant, where she lunched with friends for many hours.

In recent years she withdrew from public activities, but continue to avidly read and keep in touch with special ones.   

This is what the Diario reported yesterday:

With deep sympathy we announce the death of:

Linda Herbits, better known as Linda Shapiro

Sunrise November 1936 sunset October 2018

Left to mourn:

Children:   Andrew Shapiro (USA), Loren Shapiro (USA)

Brother: Stephen Herbits (USA)

As family: Eddie; Zenny; Erwin; Jay-R; Aris; Richard; Veronica and Saskia Antioqiua; Marie Balingit

Close Friends: Marieta Wanopa; Nilda and Andy Mayers; Adri Martilia; Angel Osorio; Linda Martis and Raymondo Waasdorp; Hubert Dirksz and Michael Lopez

Friends: Nicah and Lina Asaytuno

We apologize if during our grief we forgot to mention any friends and family.

Cremation will take place on Thursday November 2nd 2018 @11:00. The body will be laid out @ 09:00 at Aurora Funeral Home.

Simadanza Celebrates 43 years

I recently had the pleasure of sitting in the audience at Cas di Cultura as Simadanza presented it annual dance recital starring all age groups and all dance styles.

The show went from irresistible bundles of energy, the tiniest students, dressed colorfully as circus clowns, with an acrobatic ‘Weekend at the Circus,’ to the fun ‘Dusk till Dawn,’ with music by Caro Emerald, and Caribbean Streetdance, where the stage was filled with teenage dancers creating their own video clip.

The whole room was filming. Mom and pop were proud.  I took some pictures not to stand out as unfriendly.

The two last pieces were special. One was a revival of a dance created for Wilma Kuiperi in 1989, Ode, with a still very relevant message of our yearning for Freedom & Joy.

The last piece was dedicated to the late husband of Astrid Salazar, Frank Hoogland, a wals, incorporating all elements of the island’s contemporary folklore into a big tableau with more than a dozen dancer.

The thank-you list in the printed program is long. Many people contributed their time and talent to this mega production, especially the choreographers: Ina Profet, Tracy Pietersz, Wilma Kuiperi Janen, Kimberly Milan, and legendary Astrid Salazar.

The program lists the dancers of all ages, the volunteers, and the parents who drove their kids to after-school activities for many years.

Watching Un Anochi Colorido Cu Simadanza, it was plain to see that once you drive your kids to all those ballet classes for more than a dozen years, at age 18, they become incredibly graceful and lyrical and absolutely stunning, though they started out tumbling and bouncing, they end up fluid and poetic.

Kudos parents. It was all worth it.

And kudos to tireless teachers who tolerate ducklings and persevere with the absolute faith they will in time transform into swans.    

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November 04, 2018
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Bati Bleki by Rona Coster
Bati Bleki by Rona Coster
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Bati Bleki by Rona Coster
Bati Bleki by Rona Coster
Bati Bleki by Rona Coster
Bati Bleki by Rona Coster
Bati Bleki by Rona Coster