When we restored the Pineapple Lane Cottage, expanded the garden, and installed the hot tub a few years ago, we brought in lots of landscaping and covered the open spaces with brick pavers, blending the newer section with the older one, where the pool is located. At the time, it still looked sparse, so we planted a Ficus tree (F. benjaminia, the common houseplant variety) that we “had on hand” between the cottage and the spa, to sort of break up the expanse and create some private areas.
He shared with us a quaint European tradition in his home country: love locks. Couples, in an endearing gesture of devotion to one another, attach padlocks to public edifices, most commonly bridges, fences, and gates. In Europe, this is a tradition that emerged in the early 2000s, but the practice is said to harken back to China, many centuries ago. Symbolically, when the lock snaps shut, closed forever, it captures an emotion … a location in time, binding that part of the participants’ biographies, shared and sealed forever in that moment.
In Paris, perhaps the most romantic city on Earth, the custom persists, in spite of city officials’ repeated attempts to discourage it (removal by bolt cutters) in the name of aesthetics. In Moscow, the legislative council has given up, providing couples with metal trees on Luzhkof Bridge to declare their devotion. The practice has even spread to the Wild Pacific Trail, near Vancouver, Canada, where there has been some dissention between those affixing the locks and those declaring that the practice mars the natural environment.
So … you can see where this is going. Since the Tropical Inn is all about romantic getaways with that Significant Someone … it’s a “natural” — the beginning of a new tradition! From now on, guests at the inn are invited to symbolize their own everlasting love by attaching a lock to the newly renovated bird cage that houses a pair of “flying pigs” — positioned “just so”, to replace the banyan tree!