Cinque Terre Flood: Vernazza Clean Up Progress

**For continuous updates, check out my Vernazza page here***

Many people have been wondering how the clean up is progressing in Vernazza.  The photographs of the destruction from the flooding initially left me thinking this was an impossible task.

Dramatic video footage of the flood just above street level

Then I began to hear back from the residents and new pictures of their valiant efforts along side relief workers from all areas of Italy began to surface.

Vernazza is emerging.  Via Roma’s cobblestone path is again visible.  Shops are being painstakingly cleared of mud and debris.  Homes are beginning to be reconnected to water and sewer.  Donation efforts are in full swing.

Amazing efforts from around Italy

But there is so much still ahead.

I have been informed that the damages from the flood will not be covered by insurance because this was an ‘act of God.’  Winter is coming and with it cold and wet weather; the clean up effort is in a race against the clock.  Residents will have to remain strong despite their physical and emotional losses.  I can only imagine the effort it must take each day to overcome the urge to submit to defeat.  They have lost businesses and income.  They have lost friends.  The bodies of the three residents from Vernazza washed up on the shores of France last week.  Their stories of struggle are heart wrenching.

We are alive and we thank you Dad!  Thank you for holding the door to give me the time to save my family and get them to safety atop the refrigerator.  Thank you for calming the water giving us the opportunity to escape.  I know it was you, your spirit, blocking the water and breaking the fury of the flood.  I am thinking this as I realize that we have survived the impossible.  To Read More….

The store front afterwards

We can make a difference in this tragedy; I encourage each one of you to reach out to this place that has given us all so many beautiful memories.  Even the smallest of donations will help.  Save Vernazza has an incredible website with on-line donations available through PayPal.  Tell your friends; forward this message.  Many people still do not know what has happened here as the story never made headlines in traditional news sources.  We also need to remember that Vernazza needs our presence; put it on your travel itinerary next year.  Without tourism, without us, Vernazza will waver.

In a time where we have all become disappointed and disillusioned by institutions and government, I have been inspired by the strength of community coming together around the world for this little place.  The flooding itself is unspeakable; the committment and solidarity uplifting.  I am reminded (as I often am when I travel) that just going through the motions every day is not good enough; it is the people around us that make this life worth living.

Donations and frequent updates at Save Vernazza, click here

Michele Lilley's (co-founder of Save Vernazza) storefront before
Her store front afterwards
Immediately after the flood
After the mud has been removed from the street
Cinque Terre
Beautiful Vernazza
Vernazza Unburied

Tribute Video showing the clean up

copyright 2011  Andi Brown  Once in a Lifetime Travel

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About the author: Andi Brown

I am passionate about helping people create vacations that are perfect for them through personalized travel planning, itinerary review and small experience focused tours. My services put an emphasis on the experience of Italy, getting my clients away from the tourist crowds and into the heart and soul of the people. I believe in working with family run businesses at great locations with attention to the details. If you can dream it I can make it happen.