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Mix ups, mash ups and love locks at Anuga food show in Germany

By Mark A. Tilsen, Sr., President, Native American Natural Foods

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Note: Mark Tilsen, Sr., just returned from the Anuga food show in Cologne, Germany, where he exhibited Tanka products to buyers from all over Europe. We wanted so share some of the interesting photos and notes he brought back from his trip:

Love locks on a bridge

There is a bridge, called the Hohenzollern Bridge, in Cologne that goes over the Rhine River. It's on the way from the Anuga food show to the Cologne Cathedral.

The bridge is lined with locks, many of them engraved with couples' names, anniversary dates, memorials and other dates. The oldest one I found was from 1960. Most are dated 2008 to 2009. I was taking photos with other tourists, when a cop asked me not to take pictures and he told me to keep moving.

"An internet 'mix up'

I asked about the locks to any locals that spoke English. I guess it is an old tradition that started because of the internet. One person told me it was was started by bunch of hooligans and gangsters. A waitress told me it started after a large peace demonstration. It is a way for people to show commitment to each other.

A cab driver told me in broken English that it was some kind of an internet "mix up." I said, "you mean mash up?" He said, "Yes, that is it." The city wants people to stop coming. The more people keep hearing the story over the internet, it keeps growing. The cab driver said, "I wonder why they just don't shut off that bunch of tubes!"

Cathedral survived WWII

The cathedral is dated 800 to 1,000 years old, depending on who you ask. It was the only building left standing in Cologne after the World War II. I am not the kind of person who gets impressed by old churches. This building is like the eighth wonder of the world. How did they build this cathedral over 800 years ago? Local legend says it was the only building still standing after World War II. The Pope asked U.S. allies to not bomb it.

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