Half of My Heart is in Havana

After the sheer panic I experienced due to misplacing my visa, I immediately felt waves of sadness come over me as I climbed into our bus and watched Casa Lilly disappear. Along with exhaustion, I also felt as though part of me had been left in Havana as I waited in the Miami airport (cue that Camila Cabello song). Weeks later as I’ve caught up on the latest Game of Thrones episodes and posted all my amazing photos on Instagram, I still feel a desire to return to the island I called home. I keep in contact with my professor and all the friends I’ve made, adding each other on Facebook and messaging one another on WhatsApp. Hearing the news of Hurricane Irma, I immediately reached out to my friends to make sure they were okay. I know I will one day return to Cuba, but it has been challenging finding opportunities as a fourth-year student. Most opportunities abroad are geared towards undergraduates or students enrolling into graduate programs. I have briefly talked with one of my professors about interning abroad, but the outcome is unclear. With Trump’s latest travel ban being imposed on Cuba within the upcoming year, it is unlikely I will be able to visit the island without an education or work-related reason. Regardless of these challenges, I will always have the great memories made on my study abroad experience, along with my new friends. My experience in Cuba has forever changed my perspective on the world around me, bringing me unexpected experiences and a once in a lifetime journey.