The Secret of Our Charm

Speedy recuperation to all those in bed with the virus!

Our Covid19 variety is probably the one more contagious, less deadly; drink tea with lemon, and think about what you could have done differently, to avoid the disaster.

Accepting responsibility.

That’s always the Achilles heal in Aruba where indeed we like to blame the world, and often don’t examine our own actions.


That’s what it was. A mega dose of overconfidence. A native cockiness.

It is true what they say: We cannot blame one place or one person.

One of my favorite writers, Malcolm Gladwell, insists that at least seven minor mishaps that by themselves can do little harm, usually occur in succession to create a clusterduck.

On July 23rd, some of my friends wrote to me about the agglomeration of tourists and locals, after 11pm, along the Palm Beach road, loaded, with nowhere to go.

On the 24th the Police and DVG visited a certain night club, confirmed it was at 50% capacity, and sailed into the sunset.

On July 25th, patient #14 was inpatient and started his vacation early, while in quarantine, by booking tours, and eating out, leaving a contact tracing list of over 50 people.

“Testing, should be done BEFORE departure,” said a tourism executive, in reaction to that story. “Also to protect other passengers. This is crazy. They will fudge up our tourism industry, and scare our employees.”

He must be a prophet.  

Then the Marines stayed out a few days late.

Then a party in Malmok transformed into a petri-dish.

A catamaran ride turned infectious.

And off we went, to hell with good intentions, within exactly two weeks.

Aruba is the land of excess. We eat too much, we drink too much, we spend too much. You know that. I spent two months talking about GOA’s waste to the tune of AWG 4M a day, with ZERO investment or improvement.

True, we did improve the bank balance of UC, and the new Mercedes is already on order.

Now that was excessive. Have you seen the lines of cars waiting with locals waiting to be tested at the drive thru?

Would you agree that we take everything to the next level of overkill, and over-indulge?

We can’t help it, it’s in our nature to be wasteful. It’s the secret of our charm and why we are chronically broke, exposed as dodos.

How did testing become the new status symbol, the must have?  

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August 08, 2020
Rona Coster