Is there something strange about affixing a lock to a bridge in Venice or Moscow? Apparently, lovers in a gesture of their commitment to each other, have been locking padlocks to bridges in Venice and Moscow for many years now. These padlocks are inscribed with the initials of the two parties concerned, which is symbolic, I imagine, of their secure devotion to each other. Authorities in Venice and Moscow are not enamoured of the practice and regularly employ locksmiths to remove the offending bunches of padlocks. Citizens of both cities are both fans and critics of this trend involving ‘love locks‘,.

Personally, I consider the practice to be a somewhat tragic gesture in the face of love’s reality in the 21st century. A symbolic padlock is not going to keep a couple together, any more than a diamond ring or a house in the suburbs. I can imagine that city authorities find the practice to be abhorrent and impractical. Lovers locks on the Bridges of Venice: Romantic or horrific? Does true love need a lock? According to these people it must do. What will be next? Ankle chains and leggings made of gold and silver and inscribed with the names of the lovers, who wish to lock each other in an endless embrace?

Lover’s Locks on the Bridges of Venice: Romantic or Horrific?

Locksmiths in nearby Como must be licking their lips every day of the week. I wonder whether it was a locksmith who came up with this idea in the first place? Perhaps, he and his wife are rubbing their hands in glee, as they count up their profits from the sale of padlocks and on the charges they have levied on the city of Venice to remove hundreds and hundreds of padlocks. We as a race are a very strange bunch indeed, the things that we do are mightily strange.

Whatever happened to the saying, “if you love someone set them free”, I wonder? It obviously didn’t catch on in Moscow or Venice, and in the lives of all those tourists who visit these bridges with their metallic locks and keys. A psychologist would have to say that security is an issue for these people, perhaps, even a lack of trust is manifest in their lives. There are no locks on hearts and souls, they blow free in the winds of time and change. Love is an unlockable phenomenon; empty gestures will only rust away in the winter’s rain on a bridge in Venice.