Caribbean Visit Part 1

Earlier this month I was invited to Aruba for a book signing and slide show presentation. Joining me was Balsey (the captain on ALM Flight 980) and his wife Edith. Van Dorp book signingThat’s Balsey on the right. The young man in the middle wanted to have his picture taken with us. We were more than happy to oblige.


We were fortunate to have a lot of advanced publicity for this signing thanks to the efforts of our host Frederick Nuboer and the Aruba Flying Club. We sold out of books. I’m not sure of the amount but it was probably close to thirty books.


In addition to having the event covered by the local papers, we were also interviewed for a local TV spot. The book signing was on Saturday. The slide show was scheduled for Tuesday. So the extra media coverage promised to deliver a big crowd.


We stayed at The MIll Resort & Suites while in Aruba. It was a nice hotel within walking distance of the beach. The Mill was one of our co-sponsors.


Since we had come all the way to Aruba, I decided to also do a slide show in Curaçao. So we flew to Curaçao on Sunday. My good friend Mike Samson arranged several media events for us to help promote the slide show. Radio show 1


Thanks to MIke’s efforts we received some publicity here as well. The picture on the right is of me, Balsey and Tito doing a radio show. Tito (also known as Tobias Cordeiro) is one of the surviving stewards from the flight.


My thanks go out to Phyllis Hernandez who interviewed us. It was by far the best interview program that I have been a part of. Phyllis was knowledgeable about the story and asked a lot of pertinent questions. She even did part of the show in Papiamento to make it more interesting for the local listeners. The show was heard throughout the Caribbean and as far away as Holland.


Immediately after the radio show we did an interview for TeleCuraçao. Here again we were treated graciously by our interviewer Nicole Maduro. TV InterviewNicole also did part of her interview in Papiamento.


After the TV interview we had just a few hours to relax before the slide show presentation. We stayed at the Breezes in Curaçao. This is a top notch hotel and resort located right next to the beach. If you’re planning on visiting Curaçao, you should definitely look into staying here.


We had very little time to see much of the island. Three people who did play a big part in making it a pleasant stay was Mike Samson, Angel, and our driver Sophia.


The slide show in Curaçao was a last minute thing. We weren’t sure what size crowd we could expect. Fortunately, there was a lot of interest in the story and the media we did helped draw a sizable crowd. Slideshow 4


After the slide show we did a Q & A where Balsey and Tito joined me to take questions.


All in all it was a successful presentation. The only bad thing was that we didn’t have any books to sell. They were sold out on the island.


Special thanks to all of our hosts and sponsors for a great time in Curaçao.


To read about the rest of my Caribbean visit click on the part 2 link.

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