Pont des Arts

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Reviewed on 08/24/2010 | 1 Review


Where you swear eternal love

Have you done it? Have you been swearing eternal love and fixed a padlock on the railing of Pont des Arts with your both names graved in? A sign of commitment, of love and of the wish, that your love will last forever? Well, than I have bad news for you:

You’re not a lover, you’re a vandal. The City of Paris announced that they would no longer accept the vandalism and remove the padlocks. Apparently they’re not beautiful enough. Quite ugly in their eyes. They don’t fit in with the urban landscape of Paris.

Fact is that you find some hundreds of padlocks not only on Pont des Arts but also on another pedestrian bridge called Passerelle Léopold-Sédar-Seghor. Tourists had started to afix these signs of love onto the bridge, after having  meticulously engraved their names on them and throwing the key into the Seine. Exactly as they do in Venice, Moscow or Tokyo. Now a lot of Parisians do it as well: have a picnic on Pont-des-Arts, open a bottle of Champagne and throw the key into the river, so that nobody never, ever will tear your guys apart.

It’s actually something that started thirty years ago. Some say in Florence, Italy, others claim it originally began in Pécs, southern Hungary, in the 1980s. Who cares? It’s just funny to see how somebone, somewhere, had an idea and now it’s gone around the world. Like a coin you throw into a fountain. Why do mayors never complain about this? Probably because in times of economic crisis communities are happy to fish the money back out of public water features.

But don’t worry about your relationship. It’s France. They talk a lot. They don’t always act. And as Humphrey Bogart put it so beautifully looking in the eyes of Ingrid Bergman at the end of “Casablanca”: “We’ll always have Paris”.

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Pont des Arts, 4.0 out of 5 based on 4 ratings

User reviews

  1. joanna 19 September 2010 Reply

    I can’t believe it!
    It works on the Ponte Vecchio and I thought Paris was the city of love…where are their hearts?
    Hopefully they will see the beauty in the so called “vandalism”.

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