Wednesday, November 21, 2012

What New York And Venice (Surprise Surprise) Suddenly Find They Have In Common

Posted by Peter Quennell

1) New York

Plus more images down below in Comments.

2) Venice

Plus more images down below in Comments.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/21/12 at 04:25 AM in The wider contextsItalian context


More shots around New York. Most pumped dry by now. In other areas more damage was done by hurricane force winds.

I was out at Oyster Bay yesterday afternoon (one of the US’s wealthiest areas) and just about all of their power poles had come down.

They lost power for two weeks and cable TV and internet and the phone system for even longer.

<h4>More shots around New York</h4>









Okay… that last shot above is from a movie! But subway stations and tunnels were indeed flooded

Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/21/12 at 04:40 AM | #

More shots around Venice. Just about an annual event for Venice ,though this was worser.

When they finish installing tidal flood gates at the mouth of the bay this flooding will become a thing of the past.

All those buildings stand on logs hammered into the ground. Not bad considering back then they didnt have compressed air pile drivers.

<h4>More shots around Venice</h4>









Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/21/12 at 04:45 AM | #

Furthermore, flooding and much other bad weather will be baaack:

The human race acting as a whole needs to break the back of this problem. I am profoundly optimistic that we can, but central resources and incomes generally must start to grow again first.

Chami over to you to go first here.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/21/12 at 06:19 AM | #

Isn´t Venice actually the city which is famous precisely because of the fact that its streets are afloat with water ?

Posted by aethelred23 on 11/21/12 at 07:47 PM | #

Yes the Grand Canal and 25 miles of tributaries. You’ve been there, right?

The whole place is pretty improbable. Built essentially on mud flats or sand bars so the entire bay could act as a moat to keep the natsties at bay!

Now its sinking REALLY FAST and sea levels are rising and the passages and piazzas and ground floors get more and more flooded. They already have an elaborate canal traffic system:

<object width=“640” height=“360”><param name=“movie” value=“”></param></param></param><embed src=“” type=“application/x-shockwave-flash” width=“640” height=“360” allowscriptaccess=“always” allowfullscreen=“true”></embed></object>

Cruise ship visits are being discouraged. For the long term this solution seems to have the edge.

<object width=“640” height=“480”><param name=“movie” value=“”></param></param></param><embed src=“” type=“application/x-shockwave-flash” width=“640” height=“480” allowscriptaccess=“always” allowfullscreen=“true”></embed></object>

As someone wrote below a Venice YouTube though: “She always wins… ”  Meaning the sea.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/21/12 at 08:14 PM | #

Superstorm Sandy, a nightmare. Peter, I’m glad you and your family are safe so near the disaster. My daughter’s brother-in-law who is an electrician may not be at her Thanksgiving feast after all due to a call to work in flooded areas of New York and New Jersey.

Troublous times, you folks up North stay strong, hang tough. Also I’ve seen Venice, San Marco Square, the apostle’s golden lion, gold stars on blue background. A masterpiece. But think from now on I’ll view it only in Angelina Jolie movies like “The Tourist”. Let’s hope Venice survives.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Posted by Hopeful on 11/21/12 at 11:59 PM | #

Sometime early this year, I visited Amsterdam. I had a fantastic guide: husband of a former student, who was born, brought up and educated in Amsterdam. At one point he suddenly stopped and said: Do you realize that you are standing one and half metre below the sea? Looking around, it was difficult to believe. It kept on bugging my mind for the two nights I stayed there.

I am somewhat familiar with the great engineering man has achieved at the molecular level. But this was different and I was impressed. Whenever I tell others that I stayed two nights 1.5 metres below the sea, they all look incredulous.

It is impressive because it is not new. The idea is simple, robust and practical. It has been operational for long time, a very long time and without much problem, I understand. Man’s triumph over mother nature.

Today we calculate differently. There is so called cost vs benefit and economics. Things are simulated again and again with different parameters. Finally the empowered committee says that it is too expensive. In other words, people are too cheap.

Happy holidays!

The worst life: Get salary from China, build a house in Japan, live with a British wife, and eat American food.

Posted by chami on 11/25/12 at 07:34 PM | #

¨Today we calculate differently. There is so called cost vs benefit and economics.¨

We did also a lot of calculation 😉

From Wikipedia:

The Netherlands: its name literally means “(The) Low Countries” or “Low Country”. Most of the areas below sea level are man-made, caused by centuries of extensive and poorly controlled peat extraction, lowering the surface by several meters. Even in flooded areas peat extraction continued through turf dredging. From the late 16th century land reclamation started and large polder areas are now preserved through elaborate drainage systems with dikes, canals and pumping stations.

Posted by Helder Licht on 11/26/12 at 04:27 PM | #

The term for flooding in Venice is aqua alta/high water..

Posted by Bettina on 01/04/13 at 01:58 AM | #

Bettina, so you’ve been? If so we could use an essay from you. Everybody needs to have been!

I am going to download all the fine Italy YouTubes we posted and hand them out on DVD to my Italian American friends. They are sometimes sheepish about having roots there, but no need. Scroll down.

Done with real passion, right?

Posted by Peter Quennell on 01/04/13 at 03:16 AM | #

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