I first spotted Anguilla Life magazine within my first few minutes of being on the island of Anguilla. My family and I had just disembarked after a late night, bumpy American Eagle turboprop landing into Wallblake airport.
My Dad was commenting, "Now that's my kind of airport. Nice and simple. Short walk to customs, friendly folks, and off we go." During our short wait for a customs agent, I noticed Anguilla Life.
I must admit, I was tired, so merely pointed it out to my Dad who was busy scooping up every tourist freebie book and brochure he could find! He eagerly added it to his collection.
The next day, as we stocked up on groceries, I spotted Anguilla Life again... and again... and again. I saw it everywhere, from Anguilla hotels and restaurants to grocery and drug stores! Two older back issues were still available at Anguilla Drugs, so my Dad bought those, too.
When we returned to our villa, I squirreled myself away with my three issues of Anguilla Life. Printed on nice quality paper, with an eye-catching, glossy cover, it's a larger, tabloid-sized magazine.
From the moment I opened its pages, I loved it. It's loaded with wonderful stories about what's what on Anguilla, including...
Even the ads are entertaining. It's fun to read the full-color, nicely displayed ads for boat charters or gourmet dining. The mind starts to wander and drift to what we'll do tomorrow... and the next day...
The entertaining articles, the photos, the ads, and the layout all add up to a wonderful magazine. And the big, bright glossy cover is always an eye-grabber...
Anguilla Life is the kind of high-class, well put together, professional kind of magazine that you wouldn't really expect to find from such a small island. Actually, you wouldn't think there was enough to write about!
I started creating this Web site (anguilla-beaches.com) during our month-long second stay on Anguilla... August, 2002. In October, I got the shock of my (Anguilla) life. I received this e-mail...
My name is Claire Devener, the editor and publisher of Anguilla Life magazine. I would very much like to include a story on you with a photo or two and how you happened to create such a nice web site. It is a wonderful effort, well written and with beautiful photos (which is how I first found you, looking for "Anguilla photos"). Also, would you like to write the next Visitors View column of the winter season magazine? Interested???
Congratulations on such a charming site,
I had received e-mails from Amelia Vanterpool-Kubisch, head of the Anguilla Tourist Board, and from other people on Anguilla. But this was special to me, since I loved that magazine.
Just to receive an e-mail complimenting my site from the editor of Anguilla Life Magazine was such a thrill! And it was even more of a pleasant shock when she asked me to write for it. But I wasn't sure if I could do a good enough job.
Coincidentally, both my family and Ms. Devener were planning on being in New York City for Columbus Day weekend. We could meet. I was ecstatic!
Ms. Devener brought over a huge pile of back issues... a gift! It was a great evening of looking through old Anguilla Life issues and swapping stories of the island (she knows everything about everything and everyone!). Ms. Devener is a dynamic, full-of-life woman who is just so much fun, and so interesting.
We discussed the piece that I would write for Anguilla Life. When it was all over, I still couldn't believe I had met her, and I couldn't wait to write the article!
As soon as I returned home, I got started on the article. My Dad has always worked with me on a weekly writing assignment since late grade school. He reviews what I write (it can be on whatever I choose), and then pushes me to do better, showing me how to "say it better."
I never really understood why writing was so important (in his mind)... until I wrote this article. Boy, did I polish that one... again, and again, and again. Here is a sample of the finished product...
That was not to be the last time I met Ms. Devener. During our next trip to the island (in March, 2003), we arranged to meet in Anguilla! However this time, there would be less talk and more walk. Ms. Devener wanted to show us the only "rain forest" in the desert island of Anguilla. Here we are, looking our adventurous best (I'm hiding behind the tree!)...
We'd be walking right through the Anguilla rain forest, a spot which our family had never heard of before, in search of Iguana Cave.
At first my mom, sister and I were scared to be out in the "wilds of Anguilla" (ha! ha!). But the ambitious two, Claire and my Dad, pushed us onward and upwards! I'm glad they did.
It was an interesting experience, and I wrote about it for Anguilla Life!
Ms. Devener is such a wonderful, lively, fun person. And her magazine is a one-woman band -- she literally puts it all together, with the help of one graphic designer. I admire her greatly. And I'll always be grateful for her encouragement.
Anguilla Life will always be special for us. There's nothing like pulling up the covers on a frosty winter night, and being comforted by the warmth of the new issue that has just arrived in freezing Montreal.
You know the old saying...
"If you can't go to Anguilla, let Anguilla come to you." (Well, something like that, right?)
Please support this excellent magazine. It costs a grand total of US$20 for a one year subscription (3 issues, April, August and December).
Simply write a check or money order (payable to "Claire E. Devener"), and send it to...
Claire E. Devener
20 Fifth Avenue
New York New York 10011
I'm sure you'll enjoy the warmth of Anguilla Life as much as we do.