Next in the NWCCI’s series of reflections from students during their trip to Washington DC is an essay by Angela Moreno Ramirez. Angela is an NWCCI student from Colombia studying Early Childhood Development at Pierce College. In her essay, she poetically captures the beauty of DC’s fusion of culture and history through descriptions of the historical buildings and architecture of DC, and the stories they tell. Just some of the places that the participants were able to visit in the five-day tour included many historical monuments, the Newseum, and Pentagon; visits to the White House, Library of Congress, U.S. Capitol, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Museum of Natural History, National Air and Space Museum and Arlington National Cemetery.
Few people can say they have lived extraordinary experiences at some point in their lives. Few people can say they have been to magic places that only dreams can afford. Not everyone might remember the bittersweet memories, of days when life seemed easier. However, being a fortunate person, as I call myself, gives me the incredible license to say I belong to such a privileged group. For the last months I have been living the best days of my entire life. I have experienced all that I ever asked for, and it still seems unreal. How do I know if this perfect, yet lonely journey is a tangible experience? The answer is found on all the buildings’ facades, and in the parks, streets and with the people of the new places my feet have gotten the lucky chance to step on.
Many overwhelming places have my eyes seen, all unique in their own way. One of the most beautiful places has been Washington DC, a perfect fusion of history, elegance and simplicity in the same place: monuments reflecting encountered feelings and stories, autumnal trees, museums and cold nights. It was five marvelous days full of excitement, friendship and laughs.
How should I describe the emotions felt when I saw all my Colombian friends in the same room (at the CCI mid-year conference with all three CCI consortia) ; when I saw the white house with its magnificent neatness; or when I gave myself the opportunity to get to know some people from other consortiums, to then realize what amazing people they are? All these are moments that I will keep in the deepest part of my heart so no one can ever take them away from me, because they are somehow part of my personal treasure.
During this short, but enriching excursion I understood and learned details about life and American culture that not only made me grow personally, but culturally. I understood that having a certain level of respect for all historical events that forged a country’s current, world-wide image is more than necessary to demonstrate how culturally united and worthy of admiration that country is. Otherwise, all heroic actions made before would be meaningless. This is the reason why I found interesting and accurate, Americans’ love and esteem for the people who gave everything to their country and its welfare.
I enjoyed every single moment of the trip. I was more than grateful, or pleased. I was certainly mesmerized by this sensational place, and without any kind of doubt I would go and revive all those days full of joy and knowledge again, if the opportunity was given. I am looking forward to sharing all these new moments with my family and in this way let them know how blessed I was, when my application was selected from other thousands so I could come and live my dream, while experiencing remarkable places such as Washington DC and its fascinating history.
The NWCCI program is part of the Community College Initiative, an exchange program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. The opinions expressed in this blog by writers and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not reflect the opinions of the Northwest Community College Initiative program, Edmonds Community College, Whatcom Community College, Pierce College, the United States Department of State or any employee thereof. NWCCI and Edmonds Community College are not responsible for the accuracy of the information supplied by the student bloggers.