Pictures of a postcard (9)

‘Tüffi’s miraculous jump’

A new year, a new beginning, another series but the same style and let’s start with a very peculiar happening in Public Transportation. Germany more than sixty years ago ore more precise July 21st 1950.
The famous circus ‘Althof’ pitched their tents in the city Wuppertal, a conglomeration of several former independent townships along the river Wupper. Someone had the brilliant idea to transport one of their elephant babies named Tüffi (1946-1989) in the long existing monorail called: ‘Schwebebahn’ as a way of promotion and advertisement. However, the beast was far from amused and became very nerves of the wobbly ride, ran up and down the coach, eventually broke through the side and landed almost unharmed in the water below.
No one took a picture of this extra ordinary event shocked as they were but it became a famous affair with all sorts of souvenirs as a remembrance. The postcard is a well known early photo shopping product.
Any connection with Thailand is only the elephant, beside an indoor – outdoor connection at the Future Park near Rangsit; this form of transportation wasn’t chosen to relieve Bangkok’s streets of persistent gridlocks.
A Skytrain came to daylight and imagine the same thing could have happened in the city of Angles presumably with the opening of the extension till Wongwian Yai while someone within the company stupid enough thought this was a splendid way of promoting the mode of transportation and getting full attention.
Anyway the Chao Phraya River indisputable has another dept, elephants are fond of water but no swimmers par excellence, as long as their massif body keeps in touch with the bottom there’s no problem. The whole imaginary happening for sure would have been fuel for talking in the years to come.
Back to Wuppertal for a while and another picture how peacefully it was more or less ten years after Tüffi’s suicide attempt made headlines.
The construction is robust though of another dimension the Skytrain in Bangkok demands with the concrete pillars and other structures especially concerning the curves, some intersections are almost roofed.
There are other possibilities; hanging in the air isn’t as dangerous as it looks. However, someone thinking this is an outdated form of transportation have a look at the site: The Shonan monorail and see how the city of Ofuna in Japan uses it to bridge a cap between available space and fast connection, it wouldn’t have defaced Bangkok at all.


About Robert von Hirschhorn

Author / Performer or in Dutch: schrijver / dichter
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