Vanessa Fraser: A profile of integrationPOSTED: 11/8/13 3:00 PM
“Hurricane Luis didn’t deter me, I call SXM home”
St. Maarten – For twenty years, Guyanese mother and businesswoman Vanessa Fraser has called St. Maarten home. She feels a natural connection to this 37 square mile isle, saying she’s as friendly as the Friendly Island. Fraser told us that making the move from a South American giant to a small island paradise was a no brainer. And when Hurricane Luis struck in 1995 she had already made up her mind not to abandon this piece of rock. Today, this continentalist-cum-island gal believes that she has fully integrated into St. Maarten society; adopting its norms, values, culture, and national observances.
“Because I’m living on St Maarten, I always feel the need to celebrate November 11 for the same reason home grown St. Maartener’s celebrate. I am proud of the country, I call my island, its people and I really do appreciate all that it has done for me. If I only came to make money then I would not have stayed around after Hurricane Luis to aid with cleanup and put my hand to the plow in getting SXM to a fully functioning nation. I participate in everything and I support many organizations and community causes, so now I can fully say I have integrated into St Maarten’s culture.”
Fraser was quick to point out that the fusion, and not confusion, that successfully takes place on St. Maarten is what attracted her to the island in the first place.
“I love every good and bad thing about St Maarten because where ever you go in this world it will be the same action and reaction of people because we are not perfect. St Maarten is an exceptional melting pot in the Caribbean so much can be acquired on this 37 square miles. I can proudly say yes, I have made St Maarten my home but not forgetting my roots,” she went on.
“My adulthood began on St Maarten, one of my two children was born here, I have a home and a family, where else would I want to go after twenty (20) years of contributing to this island? It’s a place like nowhere else and this St. Maarten Day I am wearing my colors to show that I call it home,” Fraser said.