Acqua alta: Reprieved


And the happy ending to the story of the predicted high water at dawn today is:  Reprieved!  Curfew shall not ring tonight!

The maximum was forecast for 8:45 this morning.  But we had already calmed down by then because at 8:00 we could see that  the tide hadn’t gone past the edge of our first step, and it was already  “getting tired,” as the saying goes here.  As the tide approaches its maximum height, whatever it may be, it begins to slow down.  And slow down.  Till it finally stops.  And, I suppose, draws a deep breath.  Then it begins to move back out, or down, or however one wants to think of it. Away, in any case.

The view from our front door, looking left.

The view from our front door, looking left. Wet but manageable.

At 8:55 the tide touched 136 cm [4.4 feet] above median sea level, a delicate little 4 cm [1.5 inches] less than the maximum forecast.  Not a lot less, but we like whatever less we can get.

The image below shows a thing of beauty.  (It also, I make a note, shows what 136 cm looks like in front of our little hovel.)

By 10:00 AM the street was empty of water.  Now we can get on with the rest of the day. Unlike the wretches freezing to death in Eastern Europe.

This is what the maximum acqua alta looked like this morning. This is also a picture of me smiling.

This is what the maximum acqua alta looked like this morning, just barely making it to the edge of the first step. (The line indicating moisture above was caused by the tide's attempt to pull itself up as high as it possibly could.) This is also a picture of me smiling.

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  1. Christa says:

    I saw the high water on the BBC news last night. They also mentioned the flooding in Rome. What a mess!

  2. Erla says:

    People in Rome, like people near any river, have a lot more to worry about when the weather turns feral than we do here. After all, here the water goes away all by itself after a couple of hours. I don’t know why the world is so fixated on the Piazza San Marco. Not only are there plenty of places in the city that don’t get high water, I have never been able to grasp (perhaps because nobody has ever said, that I can discover) what is fundamentally so bad about high water in the Piazza San Marco for two hours. All these stories start from the assumption that it’s bad. But I can’t see how. Annoying, okay. But the world is loaded with annoying things that the BBC doesn’t exert itself to cover. If anybody reading this can enlighten met as to why the sight of water in the Piazza San Marco is so disturbing, I would be very glad to hear it.