Good Folks

Book signing events provide an opportunity to meet lots of people. I have to say plenty of good folks show up for the fun. A recent event at Claudia’s Beach Bar on Palm Beach, Aruba, was the perfect example. There was Claudia herself, who is a gem. She puts up with my bad Spanish and teaches me the right way to say things. Plus she makes some fine drinks.

That’s her with the nice smile and me in the silly glasses. Then there was another group that I met before. Check this gang out.

Great people each and every one of them. They come from all over the USA and beyond. Massachusettes to Alaska and in between. Various professions including cops, pilots, accountants, and more. It’s good to hear their take on things to gain various perspectives on life. Plus, the laughs can’t be beat.

Bon dia.

Published in: on February 28, 2011 at 6:42 pm  Leave a Comment  
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The People You Meet

The previous post showed photos from one of my book signing events in Aruba. During the course of a previous event that week, I met a fellow from Poland, John T. He had the most fascinating life story I’ve heard to date. First, here is a photo of John and I, on his 84th birthday.

polandJohn was in the Polish Underground during the Second World War. He fought the Nazis and the Russian Communists. His brother was involved with another resistance group which was sometimes at odds with John’s. As the war came to an end, John escaped from Poland (to avoid the Soviets) and ended up in Germany of all places before making his way to America. He was very successful in business and now visits Aruba, Poland, and other places every year. What a guy!

You never know what a person has accomplished until you take the time to speak with them for a few minutes. I have the good fortune to be able to engage people from all over the world and all walks of life at my book events and in my travels. This is one of life’s great pleasures that I can not say enough about. It’s better than anything on TV; that’s for sure. So get out there and talk to somebody!

John, it was an honor to meet you and shake your hand. I wish you another 84 years and the best of everything. You earned it!

Published in: on January 25, 2009 at 11:02 am  Leave a Comment  
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Book Signing Fun

The story told in An Island Away, takes place in Aruba, Dutch Caribbean. I have the good fortune to live on the island six months of the year, and thus, meet many people interested in the book. Here are some photos from a book signing event at the Tamarijn Resort.

tamarijn3It’s a true pleasure to meet people who have read the book or heard about it and want to know more. I’m surprised at the questions asked, which actually serve as inspiration to keep writing. After all, if a reader wants to know more or found something particularly interesting, it is a cue to include it in the next story.

tamarijn2Of course, hearing people’s stories about Aruba is also fascinating. There are many visitors who have been going to the island for 20 or 30 consecutive years. That’s quite a few frequent flier miles. Aruba is a wonderful island full of nice people, good restaurants, and fringed by beautiful beach. However, I don’t write much about that part of Aruba.

tamarijn1I write mostly about the refinery boomtown of San Nicolaas. It was here that I came in 1994, when I first visited the island. It’s a strange place, full of characters and stories, all of which are incredible when understood in the context of the Caribbean.

My thanks go out to all the people who have bought and read An Island Away. Similarly, I would like to express my gratitude to the staff of the Tamarijn Resort as well as all the retailers on the island who have helped make it the best selling book in Aruba for 2008.

Charlie’s Bar, Book Signing Event

Wow! What a turnout for the official launch of my novel, An Island Away. There was only one place where this could be held, Charlie’s Bar, Main Street San Nicolaas. I want to start by thanking Charlito (aka Charles III, that is Charlie, Jr.’s son) and Mr. Speziale for making the event a huge success. The bar had to be rearranged a bit, a steel band brought in, and everyone pitched in to get things ready. By 11:00 am people were literally waiting for the bar to open, even though things weren’t scheduled to begin until 12:30. The doors opened at 11:30 and the party began. Here are a few photos:

That’s Mr. Speziale and I, just before things got crazy. And here’s how people lined up.

I’m signing on a table we put on Main Street so there would be room for more people in the bar. In the photo above is my friend from college and her mother. Like so many people who love Aruba, they visit the island at least once a year. Then there was this lady, who reminded me of a character from the book, but she insists it wasn’t her.

It was tons of fun to meet people who have heard about the book and wanted an official “Aruba” copy. I want everyone to know I sincerely appreciate their support and look forward to hearing from all of you about the story. Yes, I am working on the sequel (with brief breaks to hang out at Charlie’s). Here’s a look at the band.

Their music kept everyone entertained. And here’s a few random shots of me with some readers.

One more for the fun of it.

You can find more photos and details on my website,, under the news heading. Or you can simply click HERE (yes, on the word “HERE”). Once again, many thanks to everyone for coming to Charlie’s as well as the staff at the bar who did a yoeman’s job of keeping everyone happy. I can’t wait to do this again. Don’t forget to email your comments about the book to my website.