By Phil Cantor FBCS CITP | CMO | iGTB
You really must lose weight, said my wife, so I bought a new bike. After a while, I found it much easier to get up hills. Between me and the bike, I think we shed a good 5 kilos. Not evenly split, of course, I did my bit, and the bike more than made up for it since it was a good 6k lighter than the last one. So that didn’t work. Got away with it for about a year, then my wife suggests a holiday. That sounds good, I thought. I didn’t realise it, but this was actually just another “you really must lose some weight” conversation. It was several weeks later that I worked that out.
“Let’s follow the Rhine!” were her actual words. I thought that might be quite fun, a glass of wine on a boat. “By bike!!” “Oh,” I said. Thought a bit. How far is it? “Just under 1500k.” Oh, I said, thought a bit more. “Which way?” I asked, thinking that would be the key question. “Oh, downhill, of course”. So we did. All of it.
I won’t tell the whole story of how that didn’t lose me any weight either or how we did manage to get to an Alp with just a bike each and under 5k of luggage each for over two weeks pedalling, or of how many surprisingly uphill elements there are to a river made of water which I had always thought only flowed one way, the down way…BUT here’s the point, the real point, we went past the Lorelei.
Now as you approach the Lorelei you can see the river, which has grown quite wide and well, full of water, gets narrower and faster and there is a really ominous piece of rock sticking out where you can see it would be treacherous – bits of rock sticking up with water flowing round them and logs and twigs getting swooshed about, and you can even hear it. This must be it! I thought. But it wasn’t. Round the corner is another rock.
Pretty much the same as the first rock, quite frankly. In fact, less impressive, it doesn’t look half so nearly dangerous (though on reflection maybe that’s why it is, in fact, more dangerous). This was indeed the famous Loreli, treacherously tempting and teasing incautious sailors to their doom.
Only nobody drowned while we were watching, so it was, quite frankly, rather dull.
Which is my POINT.
One bit of rock, looks impressive, nothing. Another bit of rock, rather dull, now one of the top ten tourist attractions in Germany. And EVERY place around it for miles called the Lorelei this and the Lorelei that. We past the Lorelei Doner Kebab shop, the Lorelei electronic shop, the Lorelei Pizza House, lost count of how many hotels, B&Bs and restaurants called the Lorelei. Couldn’t move for Lorelei.
The other rock doesn’t even have a name.
Now that’s what I call marketing.
I wonder who did it?