This is another obvious one. Where better for a mermaid than to be surrounded by water in Florida? The state is all about beach life, and Ariel certainly represents that too.
Her story also sounds like it could be a “Florida man” headline: “Florida man saved from drowning by fish woman, tricked by evil underwater sorceress, finds true love in the end.” The sad/perfect part of this is that this headline is not the weirdest thing that has happened in Florida.
Florida is also a place where Ariel could live both lives. She could live on land with Eric and be close enough to the ocean for when she wants to visit her family and friends. She doesn’t need to choose one or the other. And imagine all the stuff she would collect in Florida. It’s like a souvenir warehouse. How many Florida t-shirts and keyrings does one person need? Well, Ariel is going to find out!
She can also visit her doppelganger in the most magical place on Earth. She might not understand why there’s a woman dressed up as her and giving out autographs, but she’d probably be cool with it. She could even go on her own ride and point out all the inaccuracies. “Sebastian would never say that!” Why does Flounder look so weird?” (have you ever seen a good re-creation of him?) “How did they get my voice singing that song? Did Ursula give it to them??”
Ariel is the perfect representation of all things in Florida! Water, weird stories, and fun.