Do you know one thing that New York, Paris and Tokyo have in common? Any ideas? A hint: it has to do with 3 L’s, i.e. Lady, Light, and Liberty.
They say that first it was France to give one as a gift to the United States in 1886 to mark the 100th anniversary of the American Declaration of Independence. A 151 feet high statue of a woman with a book and a torch, named “Liberty Enlightening the World”, or the Statue of Liberty as we know now.
The Statue was designed by the French sculptor Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi and represents Libertas, a Roman goddess of freedom. Apparently, “gift” part is just a nice story as it took years and very persistent Bartholdi’s efforts to raise the necessary funds to built the statute. Gustave Eiffel, the author of the Eiffel Tower, was also involved, as he designed the “spine” or four iron columns supporting the inner structure.
Then it was Parisian Community of America to give one to Paris, a quarter scale replica, now standing near the Grenelle Bridge on the Île aux Cygnes (Isle of the Swans) and facing the direction of the West and New York City. About 22 meters high, it was inaugurated in 1889 to mark the 100th anniversary of the French Revolution.
Finally, in 1998, the French Statue of Liberty came to Odaiba, the beach area of Tokyo, to commemorate the “French year in Japan”. It was something temporary (does it ring a bell?), planned to last about a year for the duration of event.
At first that was the case, but following a popular demand, a replica was erected in the same place in 2000 and stands there, overlooking Tokyo Bay and Rainbow Bridge ever since.
These are not the only three in the world either, though that’s not the point.
The message here is that it is not always necessary to strive for something that will last. There is plenty of evidence out there that very often there is nothing more permanent than the temporary! 😉