I have always loved writing, and now that I am retired I thought I would be able to find time to write, but it seems that I still manage to fill my days with activities. I have however found that while I travel, I enjoy writing about some of the interesting things we do. I hope you enjoy reading of our adventures as much as I like writing about them.
Tuesday, September 23, 2014
Cruising on a river is different in many
ways from ocean cruising. One of the biggest advantages is that since rivers
are such important transportation routes, they usually run through the central
core of the cities. Cruising on the river means you dock right downtown, and
avoid that ocean cruise essential, the taxi ride to get downtown. This was true
in Cologne Germany, where we docked under one of the central bridges over the
river and stepping off the boat we could walk to all the local attractions.
Love Locks in Cologne Germany
The next bridge down from the one we were
under had an interesting story involved with it. A number of years ago, someone
began a story that if lovers took a padlock up onto the bridge and securely
locked it to the bridge and threw the key into the Rhine River, their love
would last as long as the lock remained on the bridge. This has become a
popular thing to do ever since, and even from afar, the bridge sparkles with
the multi-coloured padlocks covering the walkway across the bridge.
After our guided walking tour of Cologne,
we decided to walk across one bridge, along the other side of the river, and
back across the Hohenzollernbruke where these ‘love locks’ were. It really is
an amazing sight. There are thousands of padlocks adorning the fence separating
the pedestrian/bike pedway/walkway from the train bridge. Although it started
as simply attaching a padlock, it has now become a serious phenomena, with
everyone competing to lock the best padlock to the bridge as if somehow the
quality of the padlock improved your chances of a lasting relationship. Most
are engraved with the lover’s names and there are many similar shiny coloured
locks (I suspect some enterprising business will provide you with these custom
engraved locks), but many are interesting antique locks, and some are huge,
some tiny, some heart shaped some adorned with decorations. The fence is
completely covered, and there is really room for no more locks, so now locks
are attached to other locks, and they have started using chains to attach them
higher up on the bridge supports, and these chains in turn are now becoming
No Room Left
I know that something similar was started
up in Ottawa Canada, but the Public Works there cuts the locks off, so I’m not sure
what the message is there. Here in Cologne, it looks to me that all the locks
have been left on the bridge.
Our guide claimed that some couples started
using combination locks, so that if their love did not last they were able to
go remove the now inappropriate lock. I’m not sure if he was joking or not . .
. . .