The first thing that caught my eye in the North German city of Lübeck was not the tall spires of the churches reaching towards Heaven. Nor was it the ancient architecture, so European and classical. It wasn't even the romantic River Trave, or the watercolour-like browns and greens of the buildings.
It was the naked people on the bridge.
OK, so they are not real people - they are statues - but they wear very little in the way of clothes, and I have since found out that they actually represent eight Roman Gods. Mercury, Neptune, and a few others have all shed their clothes, and line the Puppenbrücke (puppet bridge) that leads over the Trave. And apparently (and I'm not sure if my German girlfriend is having me on here), if you touch the naked buttocks of one of them with your left hand, you are meant to get good luck. And probably some funny looks and a night in prison.
I have also found out that the statues that are on the bridge now are not the originals. They were removed after car pollution was found to be making them sag in places where they were not meant to sag. The originals are now on display in the St Annen Museum, which gives you a bit more privacy for a spot of lucky buttock touching. [more]
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