I walk through the main entrance of the Les Orgues de Flandres, a social housing complex in the 19th arrondissement. I pass the Porte des Flamands,(Flemish door) which is famous for its architecture. Towards the right of the door, the building hosts residents who used to live in the neighborhood before the complex’s construction in 1973. To the left of the door, you have apartments of migrant families. The school, located in the middle of the complex, is about to commence. Many parents- mostly mothers- hurry with their children to drop them off in time.
Almost half of the women are veiled which suggests that they are Muslim. One of them goes to the school entrance, says hello to the others and then turns back and runs towards the metro station. On her way, she makes fun of another mother who looks tired and who slowly walks with her kids towards the school entrance. Six children who are around 6 years old play together in the children’s square, delaying their departure for primary school while playing on the swing.
I leave the place because I know that it is not a very good idea to be a standing man looking at children playing with no other reasons to be here. I might come back once I better know some people or families.