Florida is not that bad…

I may have left Florida unscathed this time around, but theyre out to get me…

(Photo taken from Google Images via Creative Commons License)

I may have left Florida unscathed this time around, but they’re out to get me…

Daniela Arias, Assistant Editor-in-Chief

From its disgustingly hot weather, ungodly amount of swamps, and its native swamp dwelling prehistoric creatures, Florida has an infamously bad reputation.


From my previous summer visits, I came to loathe Florida. The weather, SOME of the people, and the bodies of water in every single direction were all just off putting to me. My aunt recently moved to Orlando, so I knew at some point I had to face the painful truth that I would have to pay the “Sunshine State” a visit every year.

A mesmerizing Floridian sunset reflects over the gator-filled lake. (Photo Credit: Daniela Arias ’23)


I refused to believe that my strong resentment was subject to change, but I guess I was wrong… Of course, I’m not saying that I LOVE Florida, but I have come to appreciate some of its aspects a little more because of the time I spent there during winter break. I was dreading spending Christmas in Florida. A true Christmas to me is cold. Cold weather gives me an excuse to cozy up in my bedroom with a blanket and a piping hot chocolate in hand. So, as I peered at the weather on my phone, I grimaced at what I saw in front of me…weather in the 70s to 80s—DURING WINTER!


Although the warm weather during the winter took some getting used to, I came to tolerate it—dare I say even enjoy it. Even though the weather was pleasant, I was constantly weary of my surroundings. Why was I so hyper vigilant while on vacation you may ask? Gators. That’s why.


Did I think a gator was going to possibly grip my leg within its jaws, death roll my leg OFF of my body, and then proceed to drag the rest of my carcass into the water—yes, I did. Of course, none of that did happen to me, and I would like to reassure you all that I am not writing this while my laptop rests on my peg leg.


With my fear of gators aside, I was even able to sit on a lake dock and actually enjoy the beautiful Floridian sunset. Although, there was a point where the dock began bouncing and in that moment, I knew there was surely a larger than life, green reptilian swimming under us.


A candid, riveting picture of our legs that our Matthew McConaughey-esque rickshaw driver took. (Photo Provided by Carla Moreno)

We stayed in the ever so ritzy Orlando, but we also ventured off to other charming cities, one of the most charming being St. Augustine. The quaint beach town rich with Spanish history was enough to sway my previous feelings on Florida. Riding on a rickshaw through the city, enjoying fantastic BBQ, and encountering a severely intoxicated lady who told me about her granny, life in Illinois, and then proceeded to shake my wrist with what she revealed to be her unwashed hands were some of the highlights of visiting the sleepy beach town.


There it is folks, I’ve succumbed to an opinion I never thought I would have. That opinion being, Florida is tolerable.