In the Liguria region of Italy is an amazing series of gorgeous islands known as Cinque Terre, which is on the UNESCO registry as a World Heritage Site.
On October 25, 2011 an incredibly torrential storm led to the even more incredibly horrific flooding of two of those islands, Vernazza and Monterosso, with Vernazza having the more significant damage.
In Vernazza the soil was literally washed off the hillsides, leaving nothing but stone and ravines. Over 100 mudslides followed. All of the soil from higher elevations buried the village below up past the first floors. The residents of Vernazza, who survived this monstrous flood, were all evacuated by sea via the Coast Guard after the first storm subsided, except for military and firemen and rescue workers.
The infrastructure is in the process of being completely rebuilt. That takes time. Lots of it. Just recently on January 16, 2012, the railway, connecting Vernazza to the other four islands, was finally restored. The community is working its hardest, so that tourists may return this summer. Three million of them from all over the world visited Vernazza just last year.
I wish Vernazza all the best as they rebuild their village and their lives…