Fatima, Queen of the Luxembourg Gardens WC


The same week that cars were burning across France and rioters were demanding for jobs and respect, we met Fatima who minds the Luxembourg Gardens WC.

Fatima was surprised I wanted to know her name, but she had taken the time to do something unusual that deserves mention. If you descend the steps to the Luxembourg garden WC, adjacent to one of the cafe and the bandstand (on the Blvd. St. Michel side of the park), you will notice immediately the bouquets of fresh flowers that cover every flat surface, sink countertops and next to the dish for the mandatory 40 centimes public toilet charge.
Fatima has even placed potted plants in descending order beside the steps leading into her flower filled realm. She tells me that she buys these flowers herself. “sometimes people even bring me flowers” she adds.
During this difficult time in France, there have been many demands for ‘more jobs, more respect and dignity’.
Fatima has earned my sincere respect for her simple gesture of bringing in flowers to the WC.
It is ironic that what cannot be gained with the burning of thousands of cars, can be won in such a perfect gesture of dignity and mutual respect. She has made a very small corner of the world a much nicer place to visit and that deserves a respectful ‘thanks!”

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