Love locks on the Brooklyn Bridge

It was one of those bright sunny afternoons in New York, when I decided to pay a visit to catch up with a few friends of mine. The usual tourist era had long gone and we were running out of options as the sun started to make its descend towards the west side of the town. The mime at the Union Square


or the passing murals

A passing mural

were not enough to keep us going, on a day that was a fine blend of warm sunshine and cool breeze. And out came a suggestion to hike across the Brooklyn Bridge. DUMBO (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass) was one place I’d not visited in a really long time. Add on the fascination to heights, especially when watching from below, I couldn’t have said no to an opportunity to take a shot like this.


The walkway was crowded, rather unsurprisingly so. Cyclists filled the left lane, sounding the bells and occasionally howling away to glory, to ward off the pedestrians who trespassed into their lane. There was no paucity for photographers and wannabe models, all looking to freeze those moments with the most photographed city of them all.

Capturing et al

Perhaps it was the “giant” camera that hung over my drooping neck, but I was even asked to take a bunch of family pictures with bridge as the backdrop, by the fellow “hikers”. It was on one of those pauses, amidst the interesting conversations that invariably formed a part of the hikes, that I chanced upon the locks on one of those hidden corners.

Love Locks

Fascinated as I was, I never imagined that I would encounter a whole barrage at every possible corners on those strong rock pillars that held the bridge together!

Love locks again

Curious as I could have possibly been, I decided to look up on what that meant. Tradition, they called it, dating back to 2004, triggered by a scene from an Italian movie – Tre Metri Sopra il Cielo, where a couple locked their love to a bridge and threw the keys to the river below. It spread like a wild fire, starting from the Ponte Milvio traveling across the Atlantic, through the immigration at the Ellis Island and finally to the Brooklyn Bridge. If you were ever fascinated by the number of coins that collected under any form of stagnant water, be it a puddle in an Art Museum, which signified a form of interior decoration or the Fontana di Trevi at Rome, the love locks are a league apart! I wouldn’t be surprised if I find them one day on the Benjamin Franklin Bridge, here in Philadelphia.


~ by Niranjan Nandakumar on June 14, 2011.

3 Responses to “Love locks on the Brooklyn Bridge”

  1. Love the shot of the bridge…just stunning!

  2. Hey! I’m SO glad you visited my blog because it made me discover yours. As a student in NYC who is now on summer vacation, this post made me tear up because I miss it so much… So thank you, and your photos are incredible.

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