When Hurricane Irma hit Saint Martin on September 6, 2017, it was hard to know what the final impact would be. And still today, it’s difficult to understand how much more it’s going to take to rebuild the island. If there’s one thing Irma did, it’s create uncertainty.
Since that day a lot has transpired. There’s no need to rehash it all here — you can always look back at some of the past posts on SXM Strong to get a good sense — but needless to say we’ve come a long way.
Before the hurricane I didn’t know much about the politics of Sint Maarten. I do now. I know what I’ve observed in Parliament since the storm and I’ve also taken the time to get to know many people from Sint Maarten who have been kind enough to teach me about the culture, the history and the people.
Sarah Wescot-Williams has stood out to me from the very beginning. Not only is she eloquent with her choice of words, but you can see in her eyes just how much the people of Sint Maarten mean to her. She doesn’t have the feel of a politician. When I see and hear her speak, I just feel like she’s someone who is in a position to help and who is going to do everything she can.
On Saturday, November 11, 2017, St. Martin’s Day, the people of the island came together to celebrate their pride in an island that most of us know simply as beautiful place for a vacation. The people of both Dutch and French sides of the island truly love their home and it shows every time you meet one of them. It shows in the look in their eyes, in their smile, and in their beautiful energy.
Wescot-Williams speech yesterday was a microcosm of pride and passion for Sint Maarten. It’s clear in her actions and her words that she wants what’s best for the people of the island. Hopefully, she gets the chance to prove that soon.
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