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First, check out all the pictures I posted today... they are "behind the scenes" of our "walk and talk" segments.
Monday started at 5 a.m. for me — we had early flights to Aruba (search). We arrived at the Aruba airport about 4 p.m. and, rather than go to our hotel to check in, we were met by our producer who took us directly on our tapings of the "walk and talks." We drove first to Steve Croes' house... then to the home of the Kalpoe (search) brothers... and then to Internet cafe where Deepak Kalpoe met... and then to the Tattoo party boat where Steve Croes works. While the island is not huge, these locations were not close and there is rush hour traffic on the island.
Finally, after the four tapings at the four locations, our producer "allowed" us to go to our hotel and check in. Note that our hotel is also our FOX News bureau... my room is two doors down from our set. Below me one floor is our "newsroom" which is several rooms joined. I am not sure our producer would have let us out of his sight if the bureau were not in the same hotel! Had we been booked in a hotel separate from the FOX News newsroom here in Aruba, I would not have been "allowed" to check in until after the show. (Of course I am teasing him to death about the short leash he has me on!)
The one thing that I can't emphasize enough is that this island, but for Natalee, seems safe. The tourists I have spoken to say it is safe. Someone from the government asked me why we are covering this case so closely and I said because often we follow the "unusual" stories —- and, frankly, this is unusual in Aruba.
I think the manner of investigations here in Aruba has also heightened the interest. Because the police do not hold press conferences, it can appear that either they are doing nothing or hiding something. Of course it could turn out when all the information is made public that the investigation was aggressive and thorough... we just don't know since we have so little information coming from the police. The risk is that when we don't know something that we let our imaginations run wild. This is one of the reasons I wanted to do the many walk and talks —- to give you some more information.
As for Monday night's show, I am curious whether you heard me say "so what!" at the top of the show as it was starting. I was saying it as I was getting cued to the start the show. Why did I say that? Because someone told Natalee's mother Beth to make sure she did not step in front of the camera when she replaced Julie Banderas on the chair next to me. I said "so what" — meaning that it was not the end of the world if our shot got messed up. I wanted Beth to feel comfortable in the midst of her nightmare. I did not care if she messed up our live shot — I just want to find her child for her. Our live shot is inconsequential compared to her personal hell. I really admire Natalee's mother... not I just want to help her.
Here are some randomly grabbed e-mails:
E-mail No. 1
How deplorable that American journalists, investigators and lawyers are telling the officials in Aruba how to handle their police/legal system. This country is greatly indignant when those in foreign countries tell us what to do in criminal investigations and prosecutions. If we go to a foreign nation, we agree to abide by its laws and by its justice system. If one doesn't like a nation's laws or the way it goes about investigating crimes, do not do there. Similarly, if something happens to you there, unless the government does something contrary to international law and standards, you should not be seen to complain.
Mary Anne Little
E-mail No. 2
The lady who wrote E-mail No.2 saying that she cancelled her daughter's graduation trip a few years ago because of the risks of it being out of the country made me think of just how bad things have gotten. It's sad!
Now — consider this. I graduated from high school in 1952 in Wilmington, NC. There were 'celebrations' in the form of week-long beach parties held in cottages at nearby Wrightsville Beach. But I couldn't go to one of them. Why? Because my father said "bad things" happened at beach parties. If he were still living, he'd have a stroke daily!
Edith (old lady) Greer
E-mail No. 3
Have they even checked into the possible chance that she has been traded into white slavery by the guys? Shouldn't the FBI be more involved — maybe to help with the Internet cafe? I hope they find her alive but I just think she is already in another country. Natalee fits the pretty and blonde mode the certain man like to keep until they are used up. So what do you think?
E-mail No. 4
My husband was watching your interview with one of the spokesmen for Aruba tonight and made the remark to me that "you little women are tough". He said he hadn't realized that you were so petit. You looked like the statue of liberty holding the mic up to the tall guy's face. I have short woman syndrome also and will start a fight with myself if there is no one else around.
E-mail No. 5
You are too educated and two intelligent to continue to so blatantly mispronounce the Holloway name. Most of the time, you pronounce it as though it rhymes with shallow. It does not. It rhymes with hollow. Please pronounce their name correctly so it sounds like "hollow way." If you don't believe that's how the name should be pronounced, ask a family member.
ANSWER: Robert — if that is the only mistake I made yesterday, I am lucky.
E-mail No. 6
You're on Aruba, fer Pete's sake. Ask someone how to pronounce the names. Kalpoe is not "kal-po" to rhyme with the dog food, it's "kahl-poo" to rhyme with boo or too.
E-mail No. 7
I think you need to change the name of your show from "On the Record" to "ON THE ROAD!" You're doing a great job in Aruba, and I hope you get an exclusive when Natalee is found, hopefully safe and well.
ANSWER: I really like her mother, Beth. I sure wish I could help her find her daughter.
E-mail No. 8
I think they are holding these four people in jail so they can't talk to the media.
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