Wednesday, December 26

Knurdle Of Locks

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As I ran through the sidewalk tunnel on the right in this image I noticed something odd. At first I was preoccupied in trying to get the shot of the bridge. But then, I walked back to the tunnel entrance to examine the handrails more closely. And as you can see in the picture above, there were glowing pods in the doorway. See them? Looking closer, here’s what I saw.

Odd? Bizarre?

“What the hell?” I muttered and a voice from behind me said, “You don’t know do you?”

She was smiling at me: A gorgeous blonde in a running suit.

“Um, I’ve got no idea.”

“There’s a legend. No one’s sure where or quite when it started,” she said pleasantly in a New Jersey twang.

“And it involves these locks?”

“Uh-huh,” she fingered the set, testing them, clinking them together. “There are those who believe that if you leave behind a lock that sometime in your life you will return to Florence to unfasten it.”

“There are so many who believe it?”

“More than you can imagine. I saw the police on Friday morning cutting these banisters free.”

“Wow, it’s Sunday morning you mean?”

“Yeah,” she jangled the one cluster and nodded to a larger bunch on the companion railing to her right.” These are from the rest of Friday and yesterday. They grow like barnacles, there are signs all over the city banning them… it drives the cops nuts,” she dropped the locks and started to jog through the tunnel.

“Thanks for the explanation. Um, what part of Jersey you from?”

“Jersey?” She laughed, her voice echoing in the tunnel, “Never been to the States. I’m a Swede.”

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Note to follow the Mano A Mano series


As many of you may recall I visited Italy during the first two weeks of October staying the first week in Rome and then for a week in Florence where I met up with Andreas Manessinger for a Mano-A-Mano photo-shoot at sunrise on October 7 starting at the famed Duomo and working our way toward this astonishing Ponte Vecchio bridge (yes I know that is redundant). You can begin this Italian adventure chronologically by clicking here and working your way quickly forward. Of course your thoughts and feelings mean a whole lot so feel free to wade in at any or every point.

Or if you prefer click on the appropriate keywords at the bottom of this page. Clicking on Mano-A-Mano will bring you to the images in the series I did with Andreas which I've so far posted. Enjoy....And For a review of my Florence images click here.

6 comments:

Chad Oneil Myers said...

Ted,
Thanks so much for your visits to my blog, I always enjoy seeing your comments.

I respect you as an artist and photographer.

Don't worry, I'll be back ;)

Thanks for digging around...you're always welcome to do that.

advman said...

Haha, absolutely gorgeous story. I've heard of the locks somewhere, sometime, but I had forgotten that it was Florence. No, its the Jersey part. Do you remember the two women who asked you for the way to dunno where? Afterwards you swore they were from New Jersey as well :)

Hmm ... the more I see of your images, the more I think I should have stayed a day or two longer. On the other hand, I have not finished all images of that single morning :)

Wonderful image. I love how you emphasized the entrance.

Andreas

pnfphotography said...

fun reading and the locks are wild!!!!

John Roberts said...

Proving once again that it's not just the buildings, monuments, natural wonders, etc. that make travel so much fun, but the people you meet. Wonderful story, Ted!

Ted Byrne said...

(Andreas) Yes... yes... when we were on our way from Florence to Rome, the authorities kept changing the track upon which our train was to arrive. It left me unsettled, particularly since my Italian was limited to the word, "Scusi". So we asked a pair of teenage girls if they spoke English and they too spoke tone perfect American English with what I thought was a touch of the sound that comes out of Bruce Springsteen's mouth. And yes, it turned out that they too were Swedes. Hmm... is it something in the Swedish water? Your own English is flawless but it comes wrapped in what American's hear to be a wonderfully cultured Austrian sound. Our ear tells us you are not from Jersey, Philly, or Savannah. With those Swedish woman, our ears trick us... or they trick our ears. Hmmm.....

(pnf) The locks demanded a more interesting treatment. Glimmering at daybreak they seemed to be gems in an exquisite setting. Yet even though there are a number of images of them now in my folder, I can't seem to recreate the magic that I felt standing there and holding them. There's a poem here, but I lace the talent to write it. Damn.

(John) Um-huh. The people after all is what cities are about. They're the shells we build about ourselves in ways that the culture of their moment demanded. And while we can tell a lot about the people by closely examining their shells, we run the distinct risk of not noticing the people themselves. Odd, it's like judging a book by its cover, or the candy's taste from its wrappings. Which is so dumb since the people are right there to read and taste (um, bad metaphor... but you get my point?). :-)

mcmurma said...

Great image, great story. It's difficult to learn these kinds of things even if you go to Florence. But you have made it easy and entertaining. I am enriched. Grazie.