The Curious Incident of the Blog in the Night

A few months ago I wrote a blog about the fall of  a certain prominent Italian politician whose name begins with B - a brief account of the Parliamentary tussle over his fitness to remain in the senate after his convictions and his attempt to retain power. I put up a photograph of the front page of La Repubblica.  It turned out to be one of my most popular posts and had a lot of 'hits'.

Then, just before Christmas I had an email from an Italian (who will also remain nameless) saying that he had  been seriously defamed on my blog.  I checked and - horror of horrors - there was a comment, naming this Italian and calling him a Fascist and member of the Camorra and all kinds of other things.  I deleted it and put up a warning that anyone putting defamatory comments on my blog would have them instantly removed.  All was peaceful.

But, a couple of weeks later, I get another email - the same thing had happened again.  This time it's someone purporting to be a banker in Milan making very similar accusations.  Again I deleted the comments.  It was beginning to worry me.  Then, only yesterday, I got yet another email.  The internet troll was still pursuing his hate campaign.  A different name - similar accusations.  Was it the same person?

By now I was utterly fed up - should I adjust my settings to monitor every comment?  I was loathe to do that because it's so time consuming, so I went for the only other option - I took the blog down. The world of Italian politics is a strange and scary place.

We're still house-sitting for a friend, looking after a dog and three cats - and driving over to our own house to feed our own outdoor cats every day.  Fortunately we have a wood burning stove here and it's all very cosy.  Which is a good thing, because the Italian weather is absolutely brutal at the moment.

We've had another 36 hours of heavy rain and gales and the road to our little village has slid even further down the  mountain gorge.  This is what it looked like originally, just after I'd managed to drive the car over it (thank goodness I did!)

And this is what it looks like now, despite the Commune sheeting it over to try and prevent further water penetration, cutting down the trees etc. The bottom of the sawn-off trees you can see on the left were originally level with the heads of the two men you can see standing on the plastic.

They are building a little temporary parking place for residents in a field, with a footpath to the village, but it's a long walk carrying everything you need (logs, heating oil, animal feed etc).  Also a long walk for emergency services.

 And a bit worrying that the part of the road where you will have to turn into the new 'parcheggio' also seems to be crumbling away.

The local Commune has been en masse to see the 'Sindaco' - the Mayor - but Camaiore is only a small place and it has 41 landslides to deal with, although ours is the only community totally cut off.  It's a major engineering job to construct a new road and I fear it will take months.  Not just an inconvenience to the residents but a threat to people's businesses.  Many of the houses here are holiday lets and guests like to drive their hire cars right to the door.

Meanwhile the Arno has burst its banks flooding Pisa and parts of Florence - like England, much of Tuscany is under water.


  1. Th contrast between the sullen hate comments, the cosy room with the cats and the still dire state of the roads after the inundation make a very good post wxxx


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