Depressed about the Tropical Depression

Today I lived through my first tropical depression; today I also learned that tropical depressions are a huge disappointment.

Hey Florida! We have “tropical depressions” three times a week in Massachusetts- we just call them “rainy days!!!”

tropical depression 16
Tropical Depression 16 hits Miami

Apparently in Florida, any rain storm that lasts longer than twenty minutes needs to be classified. There are hurricanes, tropical storms, or at the very least, (my favorite!) tropical depressions. I think this is because Floridians get very depressed when they have to go 24 hours without sun. I also think this is because Floridians like to think there is at least some hardship in their never-ending-summer-lives.

Props to them for creativity though. “I survived Tropical Depression 16!” sounds way cooler than “I survived Rainy Day 160!”

Anyways, when the University of Miami first informed me via email yesterday evening that they were closely “monitoring the progress of Tropical Depression 16” and “there are no plans for closings [but] if the situation should change, a Storm Advisory would be sent to the University community,” of course I got excited. Flashback to New England snow days- spoon under the pillow and pajamas on inside out? No, I haven’t matured much since graduation.

Still, years of rumored snow storms and heartbreaking disappoint did at least teach me to always verify such information BEFORE staying up all night to plan snow day parties. A quick online check was all it took: 100% chance of rain and strong wind from 4 a.m. until it dropped to a mere 90% at 2 p.m. AND a severe weather advisory? YES!

Can you blame me for envisioning the worst? Wind rattling windows, streets flooding, thunder, lightning, palm tree branches crashing down in front of the library (wait, that happens when its sunny)- how exciting! Better yet, it was going to be “Tropical Storm Nicole” before morning. I was finally going to weather a real live tropical storm like a real live Floridian! (and maybe get a “snow day” out of it…)

tropical storm at UM
Tropical Storm Nicole/Tropical Depression 16 at UM

Well, 8 a.m. rolls around, and there’s lots of rain. Lots and lots of rain. Enough rain to give me an excuse to wear my water proof hiking boots (not like I’m always trying to find an excuse anyways) to class. But not enough to cancel class. Or enough to deserve the coveted honor of “tropical storm.” There wasn’t even thunder! The palm tree branches stayed on the trees!!!Meanwhile (so I’ve been told), some elementary schools closed for the day. FOR PURE RAIN. If that happened in MA, we probably might go days, weeks at a time without school. Then again, in MA, we’re the opposite extreme. I once had to commute to my high school in this:

not a snow day in MA
not even a snow day in MA

But I digress. So I had to go to class today afterall. Thanks UM for getting me excited about nothing. At least, if anything, I learned not to get excited about tropical depressions, or even tropical storms, for that matter.

And I guess at least next time my friends back home give me a hard time for not having to walk to class through a nor’easter and for going to a never-ending-summer resort college, I can remind them that I DID survive a tropical depression. And not just ANY tropical depression…

I survived Tropical Depression 16. Take that Rainy Day 160!

tropical storm in miami
I lived through this!

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