It was just one month ago, on October 17th. We took the short train trip from Manarola to Vernazza in the Cinque Terre. It was a warm and sunny day and the main street of Vernazza was alive with visitors, taking pictures and moving from shop to shop. We stopped in one to look for a gift for a friend.
We walked down to the harbor and noticed how blue and clear the water was. We also saw, as we had many times in the past, how welcoming the residents of this village are to the many visitors they receive.
I snapped a few photos of my own:
Eight days later Vernazza and neighboring Monterosso were ravaged by floods that seemed to appear out of nowhere. Each town was buried in a devastating cover of mud and debris and nine lives were lost.
Now the herculean efforts are underway and there is an outpouring of support to these fragile villages. The residents, instead of welcoming visitors, are in for a tough winter of digging and rebuilding before the spring arrives. Here is where you can learn more: