Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Childhood Home Becomes a Museum

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Joe Klamar/AFP/Getty Images

The world's first museum dedicated to Arnold Schwarzenegger opened on July 30, 2011 in his birthplace of Thal in southern Austria.

Whether or not you’re a fan of his movies or his political career (it’s probably best to leave the personal life alone), it can’t have been a shock to learn that Arnold Schwarzenegger’s childhood home has just opened as a museum in Austria.

The grand unveiling came as the Terminator/Governator/Insert term here that ends with “nator” turned 64. The home is in the village of Thal, near the city of Graz and contains his childhood bed, a motorcycle from one of the Terminator movies, and a copy of the desk he used as governor of California. “He was especially proud of his old bed made of steel tubes where he used to lay and dream his dreams,” said the director of the Museum, Peter Urdl. We’re not sure about you, but that sounds a touch unpleasant to us.

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Schwarzenegger lived in this first-floor flat from his birth in 1947 (a sign reads “Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Birth House Museum,”) until 1966 when he left to embark upon that dream of winning Mr. Universe.

Unsurprisingly, bodybuilding is a key component of the museum: visitors are treated to trophies and photographs from those early days, some of his first dumb-bells, and an original work-out machine, a pulley with weights attached that resided in a door frame inside the flat. What’s more, we’re privy to his obsessive training routine, with the takeaway that his success in bodybuilding resulted in his stellar success in Hollywood.

And that movie career isn’t neglected either: in addition to the Terminator motorcycle is a life-size model of the iconic character, plus a sword from Conan the Barbarian. But if you’re wondering, there isn’t exactly much in the way of memorabilia relating to his personal life. There is a photo showing the rowing boat in which he proposed to his now-estranged wife, Maria Shriver, on a nearby lake, but that’s about it.

Sadly, upon exiting the museum, there doesn’t seem to be any sort of sign indicating “I’ll be back,” which is a missed pun opportunity that the museum may live to regret. Then again, that’s probably why NewsFeed isn’t in the museum game. (via BBC)

Glen Levy is an Executive Producer at TIME. Find him on Twitter at @glenjl. You can also continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.

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