Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Walkin' on the street never felt so good

Like nothing ever happened - view up by the start of the trail to VernazzaAgain, a beautiful sky and sea...
Bright shiny new clean street
Only remnant of what it took to clean this is the broom - across from Ristorante Ely

I'd say this means that stuff is getting done...
The simple looking but incredibly functional method of diverting water through the street - except now it's hose water used to clean off Monterosso
Power washing can see on the wall on the left how well this thing works

Ta-Da! Monterosso's still here!

It’s finally happened.

We’re walking on the street. More or less – there’s been so much done in the Old Town. Since we have so much to do here in the Bed and Breakfast, and haven’t even really started at the Cantina, we really only have time to go to the other side of town for a little bit every afternoon. This is actually better, for me, because sometimes when you work at something or do something everyday, you don’t have a chance to step back and actually see the difference. That something is happening.

I have this advantage of seeing the town every 24 hours, and though it might feel like it’s moving unusually and frustratingly slow, the important thing is that it’s moving. I don’t think it could go any faster, and now, we have the advantage of having streets to walk on and doors to walk in and out of. It’s incredibly uplifting to see such progress. The mud has been removed from most of the businesses in the heart of the Old Town, and they’ve started power washing, mopping, sweeping and resuming a semblance of normalcy. I even have hope that I might be able to wear something other then rain boots this week. Monterosso is unrecognizable from two weeks ago, which is amazing since two weeks ago I was under the impression that we no longer had a town. It’s staggering what a group of determined, hard working people can do. There’s still a huge, dramatic hole in the middle of Via Roma, but there are 3 backhoes working on it, and though it might seem like a messy construction site, that’s a good thing. Things are getting done.

What I think we need to keep in mind is that we’re still here, we’re still working, and for us, the only news is this flood and building this town again. Kim Kardashian’s divorce, Michael Jackson’s doctor’s trial, Justin Bieber’s baby (I looked on CNN entertainment earlier, that’s how I got these incredibly important news updates) – they don’t exist for me here. There are more important things in my life, and it puts it in perspective, but I wish I could get over my frustration as to why the events of two weeks ago were so lightly covered in the American news cycle. It’s just as important for the tons of people who care about this area as much as I do to keep the word out that we are still here, and we need help. People who have been here or dream about coming need to keep passing it on that we need exactly that. Donating to Monterosso, Vernazza and the Red Cross are great ways to help, but one of the best ways is to pass the word and come visit us next spring.

We’ve still got everything that made this place so special before. The sun still rises and sets, covering itself with streaking, vivid shades of sky and clouds. The tides still roll lazily in on a beach that’s slowly becoming clean again. The mountains still slump into the sea, and we all still gather together, laughing and sharing stories and, depending on the time of day, wine or coffee (albeit for less time). Monterosso “non c’e piรน” isn’t true. I’ve seen it. I walked on its streets again today.


  1. Thank you for this beautiful report. I, too, am incredibly disappointed that there was so little coverage in the US media, and I continue to post & share. Monterosso and Vernazza and the other damaged villages will survive, and thrive again. Because of good people like you and your friends and neighbors. Thank you for sharing your optimism!

  2. This was great to see. You all must be working like tigers to get this far along in the clean up.

    i know the whole town is committed to being ready for Spring and I know you will do it.
    hugs to you and very best wishes to the whole family in Monterosso.

  3. I am SO happy to see these pictures and share your progress. It's amazing how much has been done already. Now, I have to do my part and save my money so I can come for a visit! lol I know the B&B and Cantina di Miky will come back better than ever. By the way, how is that pronounced? I keep hearing it as Cantina di MIKEY, like that old Life cereal commercial (give it to Mikey, he eats ANYTHING...)since my husband's name is Mike (and he *does* eat anything):-)

  4. Haha, yes you all DO need tome come visit. I have no doubt we'll be open for spring. And it's pronounced Miky, like Mickey Mouse. It's my boyfriend's dad's name :)

  5. Christine, thank you so much for these updates. Yes it is hard to find news in the U.S. about what is going on in Liguria. I have found Italian news sites and translated them to get information.

    Thanks for commenting on my blog too. I love the Cinque Terre and hope to see it fully restored. I am glad that SAVE VERNAZZA has made it so easy to make donations through PayPal.