Monday, 19/11/2018 | 10:37 UTC-5
The Witness Newspaper

¡Pura vida! Pure Life!

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On May 17, 2018, a flight will depart from the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport, and I will
be on it. This plane ride will be one that I will hold close to my heart for years to come; it will be a
time I will often reflect on. This is the first time I will ever leave country.

I am leaving the country to study abroad for one month in Cartagena, Colombia.

A few days ago, I received my homestay information and, for the first time, the trip felt
real. We are now in the home stretch with only a little over two weeks remaining until
departure. I am immensely excited to be living among the locals and to study in a
local school, Centro Catalina.

I will not only be learning about the city of Cartagena from behind a desk – I will be able
to explore the white sand beaches and the national parks, eat food from authentic
Spanish restaurants, communicate using the enchanting language, and, most of all,
make memories with new friends.

This trip is a milestone in my life for many reasons. One, I have never traveled by
myself before, let alone out of the country. Two, this trip will be an
opportunity for me to grow as a person and explore the beautiful wonders of Cartagena.
Lastly, I feel like this trip has already sparked a fire inside of me to continue to travel. I
have always wanted to explore this marvelous globe and now that I am finally getting
the chance at such a young age seems very surreal and I am so thankful.

¡Pura vida!

Ariana Riccardi
About

My name is Ariana Riccardi and I am a Sophomore majoring in Political Science with a minor in History. I am an avid reader and I love to write. When I am not writing newspaper articles, you can find me watching The West Wing or hanging out with my friends. I am very active on campus. I am apart of the Honors Program, the Peace Corps Prep Program, I am an RA, PR for Amnesty International, SLEB Grand Socials Chair, APB Comedy Chair, a peer mentor, secretary and PR for RSA, Fundraiser Chair for the Relay for Life Committee, Westheimer Peace Symposium board member, It's On Us member, Student Alumni Association, and NASA.

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