Inaugurated in 1996, the Georges Simenon youth hostel stands here. On seven of the eight suitcase-shaped benches that bedeck the forecourt, a rough adaptation in seven parts of the beginning to The Widow is engraved (the eighth bears Simenon’s signature). The adaptation is admittedly approximate in nature yet is far from clumsy, since the reconstructed sentence can be read by starting with any of the seven benches.
Next to the youth hostel stands the Church of Saint-Nicolas which was the parish of the Simenon family, where they had a pew (the last row on the right). For Simenon, the church remains linked to his first childhood love and its “square, ungainly bell tower” overlooks the district “standing immobile in front of a sky of menacing immobility”:
"It was my grandfather with his big white moustache, who, at Sunday mass, went among the faithful, rattling the money in a copper box with a long wooden handle. Once he had finished, he would return to his pew,
count out the coins and insert them one by one into a slit in the pew specially fitted to serve as a deposit box.
[Georges Simenon, Je me souviens, 1945]."