Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Hospital Lariboiserie in Paris le Laribi

This morning I read online that Hospital Lariboiserie in the 10th arrondissement had become one of the few Paris hospitals to go frontline in treating the Covid19 virus. That is, they'd move non-emergency patients to other hospitals and only accept those with Covid19. And it makes sense. One of the medical staff were talking to the French media and I caught, if my translation is correct, that the doctors were proud of this considering the tradition of le Laribi, as one affectionately called his hospital.
That struck me because I've set scenes in this hospital in an Aimée Leduc book which took place in the 10th arrondissement. Also,  in Three Hours in Paris, my upcoming World War II book, there's a big scene in this hospitals morgue. During the Occupation, the German army took over the hospital for it's wounded.

 So I've visited and researched but today just found out  about it's origin.
The hospital was named after the Comtesse Élisa de Lariboisière, who stipulated that her fortune be spent on the creation of a hospital in Paris after her death. It was also to be beautiful. The hospital was built in the 1840s following an outbreak of cholera in Paris that the city struggled to control. This was the second cholera pandemic and the Comtesse insisted it should be built according to hygienist theories. The hygienist design meant plenty of air and light, and this is constantly visible in the central courtyard and the corridors and terraces that surround it.
Centrally placed is the chapel, featuring three statues, 'faith, hope and charity' - all three seen as being crucial to the lives of patients at the time! Some things never change. It struck me how committed the doctor sounded. How he and his colleagues were aware of continuing the hospital's original mission - born from a plague - and proud to be on the front lines! Chapeau = Hat's off to all our medical professionals who fight this disease on the front lines along with their important staff from nurses, aides, cleaners who perform some of the most dangerous jobs.  My thanks go to all of you for your work and care in this time.
PS Please support our independent bookstores and help keep them operating by ordering online. Many offer free shipping. In Ireland one bookstore offers curb delivery by bike.
Folio, my local independent has closed it's doors but is keeping staff to fullfill orders and paying Staff salaries until the end of the month. https://bookshop.org/shop/foliosf
Please join me, I'm ordering and reading all the books I've been dying to read.
Cara - Tuesday in San Francisco where we're all 'sheltering in place'


  1. Great story for the times, Cara. I wish I had a good independent bookstore I could support here...

  2. All great points, Cara--not to mention your timing on the setting for the new book! Stay safe.