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Some say the world is a dangerous place..that people are changing..more mean spirited and out to get you..I listen to the chatter and in some cases perhaps that is true...I certainly have, in my day, experienced some of the meanness and psychotic behavior of a few. For the most part though, I don't let those times infiltrate my life so much that I forget to look at the good in people..It has been my experience that the good far outweighs the bad..I travel frequently, I live close to a major city and I spend time deep in the I'm around people of all persuasion most of the time..and I even spend time alone..that could be dangerous right there...It has been my experience that there are many more kind and gentle souls out "there"..than there are "monsters"..or perhaps the good ones are just spending time only in the places that I visit...I don't think so..

The Island of St. Maarten is not only beautiful in it's natural has some really beautiful people..I'd like to share them with the hopes that if we look at the good, we in some way can change the bad...I love people and I think it would be a sad commentary on my life if I let fear keep from speaking decently to the people that cross my path on any given day..and guess what, they chat back and before long we are like "family"...LOL...I learn from them and we laugh at life in the simplest of ways..we share stories and we become richer for the experience...

Heleen has become a friend..she works at the resort where I stay...she is Dutch and cute and very talented. She is now 25 weeks pregnant and she asked me to do a photoshoot for her, which I did.  I love her spirit, her good heart and when I travel to St. Maarten now, it makes me smile to know that she will be there waiting for me...the difference in our age is not an issue...we are people, woman, we share the same worries and concerns.  So we connect.  How sad would it have been if we hadn't reached out to each other...and next year, can't wait, I'll get to meet her baby..

Now look at that face, that happy smile..and he's waving at me..Just seeing him so happy brings out the fun and joy in this moment...and he's selling my favorite treat..Anyone selling ice cream has to be recognized an has to be a spoken to. His life has it's ups and downs like any one of us...but he doesn't let it concern him when he is working..he wants you to have fun, have a good time and a great treat..I love coming across a happy soul that is put in my path just for the shear pleasure of connecting for a few moments..

Like any other tourist place, restaurants come and go..Captain Frenchy's is a new one in Grand Case and I hope, a permanent one..Talk about friendly, this place wins first prize..this was our waitress and she was the sweetest thing...taking such good care of us.  We chatted about where she was from, how she got to be in St. Maarten..every day talk, the same as you would to any new person you met..she would come back to our table and tell us more and we would go on for another 10 minutes..we like her and the rest of the staff so much we went back several times...of course the food was wonderful, affordable and the little drinks she sent out to the beach for us after we left (no charge) were pretty sweet also...and yes, that is my wine on the counter...

Meet the was a slow night the night we were after making sure that everyone was served and properly taken care of...this lovely man came over to our table to make sure everything was o.k.  This is a new restaurant, has only been open 3 months, so he wants to make sure he is doing everything right...We told him how much we loved the meal and the service and the next thing you know, he's pulling up a chair.  I know we will go back there, because of his friendliness to us and the jokes that we shared..yes, we did a lot of laughing with him and once after dinner..he came back with a bottle of his "special mix" and we all shared a drink together...on the house of course...I sure hope he's there again next year when we go..sweet guy. Oh and that necklace I am wearing..Heleen made that for me...I'll show it to you closer up someday.

Mr. Kelly, a brilliant man, making his way doing charcoal sketches..I met him at Arts In The Park, a once a year event to raise money to be able to keep the park going.. Artist of all medium come to support it.. My husband got to talking to him first and he is very connected to modern communication..we loved his work and so by e-mailing him images of the boys he was able to do a few sketches for us.  We would go visit him after in Philipsburg and he told us about his life on the is not easy for the locals but if your lucky enough to have some talent the tourist as appreciative of the work and the very reasonable prices...I think he was lonely also...because he sure enjoyed the company..Mr. Kelly, I will come and find you again next year...maybe have a charcoal done of Gracie.

Is it my lucky day...could that really be Oprah walking the beach in St. Maarten...sure had me going for a minute and I was getting ready to go introduce myself to her when my common sense flew back into my if for some reason it really was her, I guess I screwed that hook-up up...well, it's not like I haven't met her before...Yes, I did, at her show in Chicago...but that's another story.

Now I didn't get to meet this lovely lady but I had to include her here see, I'm a person who notices most everything..and over the last five years I have been so impressed with the way the people take such good care of themselves...I don't think they have much financially but they have a lot in the area of pride and it the way they carry themselves and especially in the way that they dress and the care that is taken in dressing their reminds me of days gone by when we all used to wear our Sunday best. Not so much in the states anymore...woman would wear pretty dress and hats and the children had play clothes and dress up's still like that on the Island..when I saw this woman walking down the dusty old road, and they are all dusty, with her pretty flowered dress, white hat and white shoes, carrying a white basket full of fresh food...I was thrown back into history..Pride is surely what it is... I like that.

I'm not saying, wherever we are, we shouldn't be cautious.  We should.  It is a different world today than even 20 years ago...what I'm saying is don't insulate yourself so much that you miss having a feel good moment for yourself and for others..I've learned that if someone doesn't want to bother with you, you will quickly know it and then move on...on the same hand..if a person has a kind and loving heart you'll also get that message very quickly...maybe just start with a smile on your face and the word...hi.  Not such a big risk for what could be a wonderful exchange...

Thanks for stopping by for a was nice chatting with you..:)


"Do not be to timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment". Ralph Waldo Emerson

"The aim of life is to live, and to live means to be aware, joyously, drunkenly, serenely, divenely aware."


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Reader Comments (4)

Excellent post Cheryl! Thank you so much for helping me to look at people differently when I am on vacation. Love all your street photography!

March 22, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

Wow, that was a mini vacation of your island people, and quite a lovely tour I might add! It is amazing how you can get acquainted and strike up a conversation with people and most of them are only looking for a kind soul, like yourself. My husband is like that too, he has never met a stranger. These are beautiful stories and photos about beautiful people, and your post was very heart-warming Cheryl! How special to photograph the expectant mom. I do miss the dress code we grew up with, there was a pride about how we presented ourselves wasn't there? These people all seem so grateful for the things and opportunities they have, it seems. Thank you for sharing such a lovely post!!! ♡

March 22, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterBeverly

Thanks for inviting me to meet your friends such happy smiling faces, it's good to celebrate the ups the downs can take care of themselves....

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterViv Halliwell

I put aka Cowgirlrightup because I don't want you or Liam (when he gets older) mistaking me for other Marilyns. You fooled me too with the Oprah boobs and look at you all cozy with the cook. You're so lucky Jim isn't a jealous man. Much enjoyed! You inspire me to want to make a blog but I'll wait until I'm a grandma. Someone to leave it to :)

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