Super sad news this week- On October 25th, the towns of Vernazza and Monterosso in the Cinque Terre were pummeled with an insane amount of rain. If you’ve been there or seen the any of the millions of pictures out there of these picturesque towns, you know that the streets are narrow and the cliffs around them vertical. All the rain caused some serious flash flooding. Above Vernazza, which is the most beautiful and perfect of the 5 towns, the hillside gave way, washing right through town and burying it in mud. Cars, fishing boats, stores and resturants, and at least 9 people- washed out to sea. What was one of the most beautiful harbors to be seen anywhere is now a pile of mud and rubble. If this had happened in the states, it would be huge news. I only heard about it by chance.

For those who have been there, this is hard to take. We look at these pictures and remember where we sat to eat a meal or a gelato, where we swam at the beach, or in my case, where I sat for 3 hours and got sunburned making a painting. To think that it’s not there now is devastating.

Here are some great links to articles about the rescue efforts.

RICK STEVES, who is largely responsible for opening up the Cinque Terre to tourism and the enjoyment of millions, has a wonderful tribute here.

There’s a great blog here with lots of other information about the rescue effort and the work ahead to rebuild this wonderful town. You can donate as well to help-

Please pass the word on to those who treasure this place and keep all those effected in your hearts and prayers-