LITTLE BAY–“It was very, very impressive to speak to a lot of people who said ‘yes, we are going to come out of this stronger. We are St. Maarten, we are the friendly island and we will be back in the future,” said Dutch King Willem-Alexander of the people of monster Hurricane Irma-ravage country-within-the-Dutch-Kingdom.
The resilience of the St. Maarten people as well as their struggle for water was communicated loudly and clearly to their King Willem-Alexander when he witnessed first-hand the devastation wrought by monster Hurricane Irma.
“It had given me an amazing opportunity to even better understand what this storm meant to St. Maarten,” the King said on Monday evening after witnessing what is left of the 16-square-miles country. “I am convinced the people of St. Maarten can do it … we stand together.”
“I trust that everybody is doing their utmost best … to make St. Maarten the friendly island, the paradise we know it was before Irma and within the shortest time we will be back on our feet and St. Maarten will get out of this stronger and more beautiful than before,” the King said.
He added he was “trying to understand what it means to have a natural disaster like Irma hitting you, then coming outside and seeing total devastation … desperation and everything and still putting your shoulders and starting to clean up and saying ok we have a future together.”
“When the first films and photographs came out after Irma, it was too much to grasp, but we also realised immediately that whatever happens the next phase was to get as much aid to St. Maarten as possible,” the King said.
“I fully realise that yesterday is better than today and tomorrow is too late. But, you also have to understand we can’t do miracles here. This disaster is huge. The whole public life really is gone … but bit by bit we will start rebuilding St. Maarten,” the King said.
The Caribbean part of the Kingdom is “never out of my heart. You are always part of our feeling and our prayers,” the King said.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/69325-resilience-of-st-maarten-impresses-dutch-king