Paris has long been known as the City of Lovers. And, in recent years, one way that people have been demonstrating their love, is by attaching padlocks to the railings of the Pont Des Arts, which links the Quai des Tuileries on the north bank of the Seine with the Quai de Conti on the south. However, this has caused a problem.
So many ‘love locks’ have been attached to the bridge that a section of railings collapsed under the weight. The problem was so great that in 2015, close to one million locks weighing a total of more than 45 tonnes, had to be removed from the bridge to prevent further damage. Thankfully, resourceful Parisians have found a new way to demonstrate their love.
In Place d’Acadie, in the 6th arrondissement, above the métro air vent beside Mabillon station, young lovers are tying red and blue plastic strips to signify their love: red for girls; blue for boys. The strips are blown by the hot air, which rises up from the passing underground trains, causing the red and blue streamers to stand on end. The longer the strip, the greater the love.
However, there is a caveat. If your strip is too long, the force of the rising air will not be sufficient to cause it to stand erect: and a flaccid strip is an unmistakeable sign that love is lost.
So, lovers beware. Choose your length wisely. Biggest is not always best.