Everyone knows the tale of the Pied Piper of Hamelin, in which the German town was plagued by rats and hired the Pied Piper to take them all away. The Pied Piper led them into the nearby river and drowned them, and then demanded his fee. The city government decided not to pay him, citing budget cuts and the need to curb deficit spending. The piper then piped all the children away. This was a big relief for the city government because they could eliminate the education budget.
Now the city of Hamelin is facing a new plague of rats. Local officials say they’re attracted to the food left out by tourists for the birds. One rat apparently didn’t get his share and instead chewed through a cable powering one of the town’s fountains.
There’s no word if the city will hire another Pied Piper.
Hamelin is a popular tourist attraction and holds re-enactments of the famous story during the summer. It also has a well-preserved Old Town with many elegant buildings dating as far back as the 16th century. The surrounding Weser Mountains Region offers hiking, biking and sights such as the Hämelschenburg Castle.
[Image courtesy Wikimedia Commons]