Wednesday, December 5, 2007

The other side of my trip

I enjoyed my trip so much, but don't want anyone to think all is rose-colored. It is not. As in many places around the world, life in Curaçao has changed, become more dangerous. People have become more cautious and not everyone I spoke to sounded happy. Crime is high, criminals are more daring and everyone sort of look over their shoulder when they go out. I was told of robberies, government corruption and a poor economy.

Some things I noticed, when people approach a street light, they slow down and don't stop next to any car. When coming out of a restaurant, they go out in groups and not too late. Everyone tries to park as close to the place they are going to as possible. If you live far from the city center, you try not to drive back too late, or you ask someone to follow you.

There are guards outside private schools and banks and in many homes. Not too many gated communities yet, but they are a few more than last year. There are bars on windows and security companies are doing very well........Still...

Everyone is out for dinner or drinks, so restaurants and bars are doing very well. There are art exhibitions, school presentations, the movies, celebrations of all sorts. I saw many convertibles carrying Sinterklas and his helpers going from one place to another. Stores are open late for the Holidays and people are visiting at night. Everyone just adapts to new circumstances, like everywhere else in the world; and in Curaçao you still have the laid-back lifestyle, the gorgeous weather, the beaches and the closeness of living in a small community!

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