Italy as a country is in disaster. There are avalanches and flooding throughout the country – from north to south. After a summer of no rain, the gods have come back with a vengeance and near us, pushed the Arno almost to its breaking point – even after all that had been done to prevent this from happening again after 1966. The height of the flooding came midday today, as the water roared under the bridges and flooded the banks of the river from up above Florence and down to Pisa. In Pisa, the military put extra barriers on top of the retaining walls, bracing for the water to hit the edge. Many people were evacuated, schools are closed tomorrow in many areas.
“It happens often!” Some people have posted with photos from a few years ago when the flood levels rose, or back in the ’90s or the ’80s, “it’ll all be fine!” As the local governments warn all to stay away from the river, what else is there to do on a (finally) not-so-rainy Sunday, so crowds gathered everywhere, all eyes looking down at the torrent, wondering how high it’ll get.
The water has finally slowed a bit, as the rain finally slowed this afternoon, but the forecast looks grim, with another full week of rainy days, and I can only hope that it won’t be as bad as it looks. Tonight Venice is bracing for another round of “acqua alta” through the next few days as people attempt to clean up from the other astronomical highs just a few days ago. In the days after the drowning of the city, blame was put on the devices that have taken decades to build that were supposed to stop the high water, and they aren’t even finished yet, and they failed.
Honestly, they are certainly right in blaming the system to an extent. In Venice it seems that corruption is coming out. In Florence, an article from the Florentine in 2016 states that “The ITSC concluded that Florence remains at risk to significant flooding and this risk grows each day. It is not a question of whether a flood of the magnitude of 1966 or greater will occur, but when.” Yet so many believe that they’ve made sure something as terrible as 1966 would never happen again. They built dams, there’s technology, but truthfully, there isn’t much. As the waters rise every year, and the weather becomes more unstable, we run the risk of losing beautiful cities like Florence and Venice, and I’m not going to just blame the governments, and I can’t blame the weatherman, but I can certainly blame it on the weather of our world drastically changing year by year and no one wanting to change with it – regardless if the cause is natural or human-made.
Italy is on high alert throughout the next week. As one of my friends asked today on Instagram – What’s the opposite of a rain dance?