Friday, June 13, 2008

I Thought This Was the Dry Season

So, I find myself saying that all the time lately.

I feel like it rains intermittently every day. I cannot find any source online that keeps current records of rainfall in Samoa, so I am not sure if it is rainier than usual this dry season. However, in my talks with locals they seem to agree that things have been unusually wet lately and the conversation usually turns to climate change. The Samoans I have talked to about the rain blame it on global warming. There seems to be a low-level, underlying concern here about global warming because of the anticipated rise in sea levels. One teacher at my school said he has talked to people from low-lying islands like Tokelau who already looking into leaving their homes because they don't feel like they will be there in the coming years. It is an interesting thing to think about. Many things about climate change can seem very academic and intangible when you live in the States. But when you live on an island that is barely above sea-level now, a rise in oceans is a very real, very tangible, very eminent threat.

Of course all this complaining about rain could just be perception. We were told that this was the dry season, but that just means dry for Samoa. The average rainfall in Samoa for May is 7.6 inches. That is double the average rainfall for May in Orlando (3.7) and almost double Indianapolis (4.4). So sure, this is the dry season because it is drier than the wet season. However, it is still wetter than the last two places I lived.

— Sara

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