By Mariah Smith
Updated: Sep 11, 2018 @ 11:34 am
ABC

This season of Bachelor in Paradise introduced us to the most optimistic person in Mexico, Annaliese Puccini. Annaliese is what your year-round-Sperrys-and-khaki-shorts-wearing cousin would call “a smoke show,” but despite being absolutely stunning (not to mention nice), she’s had some trouble on the show from the beginning. Despite that, she never loses hope.

Approaching the show with a very clear goal of finding The One, Annaleise walked in on the first day of Paradise with tunnel vision, searching for whoever might become her future husband. But, two failed relationships in (Jordan the Model and Kenny the Dad) and not that large of a footprint in Bach Nation (she went home during week three of Arie’s season and has under 100 thousand Instagram followers), Annaliese made it to the end of the season.

Last night, she accepted her current boo Kamil's invitation for the Fantasy Suite. Even though they’ve been dating for mere days, she's ready for a formal proposal. Paradise moves fast, but Annaliese moves faster. Now that Annaliese has maybe found her forever mate, I think it’s time we get to know a little bit more a lot who she was before Paradise.

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At 33, Annaliese works as an event planner, and she’s been an actress/model for most of her life. Aside from selfies and the occasional costume shot, Annaliese has filled her Instagram with photos of herself working as a performer for the past three decades. What she’s failed to post, however, is a #tbt of the bumper car trauma she suffered as a child and recounted on The Bachelor. Remember that? Her history on the show, mixed with her seemingly frantic and tireless search for a husband during Paradise, do make Annaliese seem quite odd. But, I’m not convinced she’s as removed from reality as franchise has made her out to be.

Yes, Annaliese may have a habit of reading too deeply into small interactions, possibly leading her to think that Kamil invited her to the Fantasy Suite because he has seriously strong feelings. In reality, Kamil let out an “oh, fuck” to the boys, because he didn’t know if really wanted to be there with Annaliese, or continue their relationship outside of the show. Still, you could tell she was Into It with a capital I. I’m sure there’s a study saying that feeling such strong emotions within such a short amount of time is detrimental is some way, but I'm thinking Annaliese wouldn't care. For better or for worse, she’s open to anything, and will vocalize how she’s feeling. After all, she did tell us in her Bachelor questionnaire that Tracee Ellis Ross, Miley Cyrus and Chrissy Teigen are her greatest inspirations because they don’t apologize for being fully themselves. Which, frankly, tracks.

Despite the fact that she's got her eye laser-focused on the prize, Annaliese also seems relentlessly genuine. She exhibits pure joy both on and off screen — honestly, it's sort of alarming. I mean, she is still displaying signs of Bachelor cult behavior in the way she speaks about her journey on the show with wide, unblinking eyes and a fixed smile, but she seems happy. At the end of the day that’s all that matters —even if Kamil doesn’t propose tonight and just took her to the Fantasy Suite for sex. Let's hope that things work out the way Annaliese wants them to — after all of this, she deserves win.

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