New rains, new disasters…


Snippets of film of the landslides and of the high waters of the Aulella River in Codiponte this morning, Wednesday, November 28, 2012…

Looks like an improvement after 24 hours of pelting water but, unfortunately, it’s back to raining as I write. Gads.

A flood’s rubble…

Drove into Codiponte this afternoon with The Dogs. They missed The Show. Slept right through it. Well, Nina didn’t sleep. Never does in the car. Moses can’t wait to get into any vehicle, even one not belonging to either You or me, for a good long road-humming schnooze. No. Instead, Nina sits on her haunches in the foot well on the Passenger side… Moses gets the passenger seat, as per being Dog Numero Uno… and looks at where we have been. The Show’s in front, Dear Girl

bridges swept on down da rivah ahnd on owt ta’ da sea… mud slides stemmed quickly with 5 feet high reinforced concrete retaining walls with… as a friend calls them and this makes me chuckle… hair nets for no-fuss Mud Control…. bulldozers back-‘n-forthing with their labors even after two weeks of steady earth-moving Flood Control employment… rivers which have completely changed their course by several hundred yards!!!… dirt roads AWOL… and other water-bourne disasters.

No sooner had I tootled by the ONLY road sign for Codiponte, I slammed on the brakes to talk with My Dutch Friend and her Milanese Husband. They were climbing up to their home isolated by a series of mud AND rock slides that Fateful Weekend. I was informed that where I had abruptly planted My FIAT was under 6 feet of mud & debris from a nearby landslide. I was too stunned from seeing the Aulella River careening down a totally new water way about 200 yards from where it once coursed along the Strada Statale 445 to make any remark beyond… Wow!

Later A Big WOW!!! hit. Here is what I saw from Our Scenic Overlook at il Poggiolo… if means a lot to me ’cause I know what it was like… no more river bed trees… ANYWHERE!!! By the way, isn’t Codiponte a charming place in this view? Garbage dumpsters galore. Oh! And, can anyone spot The Dog? AND tell me which one it is too?. I’ll give no hints.

A bulldozer had cleared the mountain of tree-trunks, limbs, branches, entire trees AND Assorted Refuse from the Medieval Bridge, pushing it over to The Wall to be buzz-sawed and carted off by any locals interested in a Life-time Supply of firewood. Sorry I missed that. We’re kind of low on firewood.

Here’s a close-up of the rubble which nearly swept away the Medieval bridge. And, it is often the rubble which does the washing away. It reminds me of A Really Good Hair Day for Phyllis Diller… bless her heart. Oh, well, one more shot and let’s adjourn for dinner. Gads.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Back at the Tuscan “ranch”…

Arrived this afternoon at il Poggiolo all dark, COLD, left to its own lonesome devices…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

… but all that tristezza scura disappeared when I happened to notice the sasanqua in Full Autumnal Bloom on the aia as I progressed with My Inspection of il Poggiolo.  Dogs in attendance too. Gads, I suppose, in this case?

Residential differences…

Here, no need to stoke the fire to keep warm. No fireplace. Just radiators to program to turn on & off automatically, as per your pleasure. HATE the bills which come for that. Lots of light though. Views too. Port & ships & seagulls. Plenty of open space. WOW!!! Our Genoese residence and My Headquarters for the past three weeks. And yes, that stool has ONLY three legs.

But what a far cry from il Poggiolo!!! Its complete opposite. How did that happen?

Cannot resist the absence any longer. It must be the Blue calling. Dogs, clean & folded laundry & My Esteemed Self will squeeze into the FIAT Barchetta and saunter on down on Monday morning to Codiponte at 90 kph… a method to save spending one’s inheritance at the pump. I am sure the yard will need tending to. And, it will be, just as soon as I can get a fire going in the fireplace in the Appartamento Azzurro. The Dogs LOVE warm. It’s supposed to rain. Fine. We’ll be cozy. Gads.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A reminder: My New Blog, Serendipity…

My New Blog is on the Blogosphere, Serendipity…http://forrestspears.com/serendipity 

So far, there are two posts… one about pottery shards I found while renovating a cantina… to be an artist’s studio… in a 16th Century single-family palazzo I had bought years ago in the Historic District of Genoa. The other, just posted, is about the monumental Cemetery of Staglieno, also in Genoa. Check them both out. There are videos too! Gads.

Sunny skies for at least a week…

Clear skies over the Lunigiana!!! Could be a title to a song. That, or how about… I left My Heart In Codiponte? Better? The place seems like only a fond memory. But what? I’ve only been away for two weeks. Yet, all that fracus about flooding has brought the Lunigiana, Codiponte and il Poggiolo closer to My Heart. Anyway…

After-flood Reports have pretty much dried up, much like the flood waters of last weekend. One Codiponte Friend did send me a rather hysterical e-mail… with not a drop of ha-ha-ha either… describing her exasperating car journey to & from Aulla on Tuesday last. I replied… Breathe!!! Have had no further communications. Was I rude? Two years a go a huge rock slide forced the closure of the same track of road where the bridge went out last Sunday. It just meant a meandering drive over Hill & Dale to reach Aulla. Got to see some scenery otherwise unknown to me. I imagine now the same. Otherwise, many of Our Codiponte Friends have spoken of a quiet return to Normal Life in the village and a patient resignation about the long & circuitous drive to Civilization down in Aulla.

The Capitano del Meteo has predicted sunny weather for the next few days. I’ll let the Balkans deal with flooding for a while. Gads.

Flood disaster update…

Not an actual photograph of recent fluvial events. It’s only to get everyone in the mood…

The flood waters have abated!!! The mud & rocks slides on the Strada Statale 445 have been bull-dozed clear, restoring, once again, the vital communication link between Codiponte and the tiny part of The Known World… which, if you were to ask the Tuscan folk their Opinion, they’d say, Tuscany. They are so snotty!!!… called the Lunigiana.

What a wonderful invention the bull-dozer is. Every family ought to have one. So handy. Like… Hey, honey! I think I’ll go bull-doze the rock slide out of our back yard. And you could do it, if you had a bulldozer in your Esseccatoio or cantina. Or, how about… Hey, Honey! Me and the Guys are goin’ down to The River and open her up some!!! What fun, no? So collective… gosh, so Commie… Sorry, I got carried away.

Meanwhile, towards Aulla, the Authorities keep closing other state roads for fear of more mud & rock slides along the critical route. Our English Friend, newly reconnected with her just re-established telephone service, said the car trip between Codiponte & Aulla is tortuous. Gosh.

And, All is Well at il Poggiolo!!! My Intrepid Scout & Dear Dutch Friend paid the place a Visit of Inspection. She said it was very peaceful. So different from Genoa.

So, the sun shines…. the temperatures are mild… and I am going to cook for You a fresh porchini mushroom pasta tonight made with a delectable white wine sause. Yum-yum. Gads.

Liquid disasters…

Codiponte is isolated!!!

Here’s a shot of how Codiponte looks when it really, really rains and, apparently, that is all it has done since Noon yesterday.

OK… I am not sure of the sequence of events but, My Dutch Friend called me this afternoon… Sunday… with the late-breaking course of events…

The Heavens let loose a wall of rain all yesterday… Saturday… afternoon & night in the Lunigiana. By Midnight, Mother Earth could take no mo’ water. She let loose a series of mud & rock slides… several along the critical communication route of the Strada Statale 445… which summarily cut Codiponte off from The World… well, Gragnola and all west.

The Aulella River tipped its banks at some point late last night and put all those cleverly built houses in Codiponte’s flood plain under water. Folk worked through the night to save the offices of the Croce Bianca… an important local ambulance service… housed in one of those Flood Plain Houses. Others fought to save other residences & shops in the village proper from the high waters of the stream which cuts the village into two at the Piazza Civico. I can imagine lots of flooded cantine. Not good for salami, formaggi e legno.

Real Disaster struck when a key bridge in the village of Serricciolo… one of three towns you have to pass through to get to Codiponte from Aulla… washed away early this morning. In a few brief seconds, most of one part of the Lunigiana was cut off from the other throwing in the Rest of the Known World for Good Measure.

I am waiting another call from My Dutch Friend to tell me how il Poggiolo took all that water. And, if I have to go, how can I get there? Gads.