I must have hurried across this footbridge a couple of times, before I finally noticed them, all those padlocks in various shapes, sizes and colours. They were glittering in the sunlight. Looking closer they were also all engraved.
Since then I have learned this new trend comes from Italy, where lovers attach a padlock with names, dates and maybe a promise of love to a bridge and throw the key into the river underneath. It has since spread over vast parts of Europe and beyond – and of course finally arrived at my home town too. There are several rivers within this city and more just around it, but no bridge is quite as suitable for decorating it with locks as this one. It is rather long, it has lots of bars on either side that will hold vast amounts of locks. In addition, it is quite ugly and can certainly do with improvements.
When you bend to fasten the lock, you also have a very pretty view of the city. Until yesterday I hadn’t noticed, because the iron bar and pipe block the view for everyone standing on the bridge.
I must admit, I am not very romantic. If I ever wanted to make my love known this way, I’d probably keep a spare key, so I can remove the padlock again and throw it into the river when things go south. I’m no misanthropist though and I sincerly wish all the couples, who share their happiness with us by letting us know about it, a joyful, lasting relationship.
How the fish feel about the new trend hasn’t been researched yet.