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Charise Samuel

  • Oh Antigua, Land of My Birth

    by Charise Samuel | Mar 08, 2019


    Since my first year here, I have taken great pride in the fact that Manchester is my home. This is a statement many of my fellow Spartans have made, but for me, it resonates in my heart. As an international student, I struggle with being so far away from home and everything that I grew up knowing. Before this past January Session, I had rarely left campus since I first stepped foot here. Outside of clubs, class field trips and spring break, my entire life for the past three years has been centered on Manchester.

    As much as I may love MU, being able to go back home for the first time in what felt like forever was exhilarating, overwhelming and somewhat scary, all at the same time. Just landing at the airport and looking out t from a the tiny airplane window filled me with a happiness that is almost impossible to explain. Being able to go to my childhood home and sleep in my bed for the first time in years was a feeling that I missed.

    A geography lesson for you adventurous Spartans: Antigua is a part of the twin-island nation of Antigua and Barbuda and is located in the Caribbean. The national fruit is pineapple. We gained independence from Britain on November 1, 1981. Tourism is our main industry and our main attractions are the beaches, of which we have 365. The island is 108 square miles wide. We have Carnival every year in mid-summer. The most important thing to know, is that everything I’ve stated are just facts. To truly know and appreciate Antigua, you have to physically be there. The sights, the sounds, the smells, are things, in that need to be experienced to be truly understood.

    When it was finally time for me to leave and come back for Spring semester, I was numb for a little while. It didn’t truly hit me until I was in the airport and I had to leave my mom. It was unbelievably sad for me, but the one thing the brightened my spirts, was knowing  that I had a home waiting for me  back at Manchester