I Want To Write My Own Love Story

Original post date: 10/22/12 My well-worn and tattered copy of Love in the Time of Cholera sits tirelessly on my bedside table. I remember being mesmerized by this doomed love story when I first picked it up my senior year of high school for a term essay on unrequited love. That’s when it all changed, […]

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I’m published on Thought Catalog!

Original post date: 9/21/12 Read “What Does It Mean To Be Beautiful” on Thought Catalog… What Does It Mean To Be Beautiful by Danielle Nelson Not many people can say that they rely on SPF 70 to avoid looking like a toasted strawberry. I’m also left-handed, I can ramble on for hours, and I kind […]

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Colombia Part 7 & 8: The End

Original post date: 8/17/12 Part 7 of 8 My Speech from the Duke Engage Colombia, Medellín Mi Hogar Show 2012 Buenos días, mi nombre es Dani. Las tres semanas que pasé en el Picacho con mi cogestora, Maria Silvera, fueron una de las mejores experiencias de mi vida. Debido a la paciencia y la ayuda […]

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Revelations: Purple Scribbles in a Leather Bound Journal

Original post date: 8/15/12 August 11, 2012 Guatape, Colombia (excerpt from my personal journal) My nemesis. A feeling that lonely drifts down a path, nervously looking over my shoulder every few minutes to ensure that no one is in tow. I’ve never felt understood. And I’ll never feel comfortable while misunderstandings linger. This familiar threat […]

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Colombia Part 6: Place

Original post date: 7/31/12 Place. I never get attached to places. I’m not attached to my Southern roots. Or the sleepy town where I was born and raised. My neighborhood is an idyllic representation of the classic suburban landscape and it’s all an illusion, lacking warmth while full of empty hellos and “how are you’s.” […]

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Colombia Part 5: Onwards

Original post date: 7/31/12 Come my first day of work in the field, I was quite nervous. Although it now seems completely unnecessary and silly in retrospect, I arrived an hour early in my blue Medellín Solidaria chaleco, and sat on the front steps of Metro Suramericana with a book lying open on my lap […]

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Colombia Part 4: Life As We Know It

Original post date: 7/31/12 My host mother is a warm, lovely person who has shown me a compassion that I never anticipated. She wakes up early in the morning to prepare me a hot breakfast before going out into the field and upon my return in the late afternoon, listens to me ramble on about […]

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Colombia Part 3: How To Go From Elle to Dani

Original post date: 7/31/12 1) Insist that everyone call you the Spanish equivalent of some masculine form of your name for the first 3 days: Danielle sounds like “Daniel” in Spanish, Elle sounds like “él” (he) and then finally make life easier and say Daniela or Dani (sounds like Daní)… 2) Get so incredibly lost […]

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Colombia Part 2: Duke Engage 2012 Takes the Field

Original post date: 7/31/12 When I walk around town, I have accepted that I am una extranjera, una gringa. I expect it. The stares are not new, the attention leaves no lasting impression, but I want the person behind my camera lens to experience more than a living, breathing, personification of a ‘language barrier.’ When […]

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Colombia Part 1: First Impressions

Original post date: 7/31/12 Medellín es chévere. Seriously, muy chévere. The city is beautiful, stunning, and different from anything I have ever experienced. Growing up in quiet suburbia, I’m energized, but also overwhelmed by the excitement of my surroundings. I fall asleep to motorcycles, cars, and taxis zooming by on the busy streets each night […]

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