Flic en Flac Cemetery


Ici repose
Mme Narain Govind Raojee
Née Jawantee Gunesh
Décédée le 25.3.2008
A l’âge de 73 ans

Ici repose
Mudhun Luximon
Né le 6 avril 1939
Décédé le 11 avril 1995
We love you DAD

James Colin Mayer
06.02.1962 — 07.08.2009

Famille Mayer

Ici repose
Soodil Mahadoo
décédé le 31.07.2006
âgé de 27 ans

Benjamin Harold Lutchmaya
Who fell asleep in Christ
on the 7th January 2006
aged 62 years
great husband and
Father dearly missed
gone from our sight
yet he truly lives
on in our hearts

Anonymous grave.

Barbed wire-fenced cemetery, presumably to prevent the living from getting in.

Shout Club.

Ultimate anchoring.

Marie Auguste Elias Suirangon
décédé le 21.6.2006
à l’âge de 70 ans
Que son âme repose en paix

Ici repose
Mme Laxoomee Dhurma
née Beecah
décédée le 4.7.2006
à l’âge de 66 ans
Regrets Eternels

Ici repose
Ulric Sournois
décédé le 3.3.1995
à l’âge de 83 ans

Ici repose
Louis Levaillant
né le 29.7.1945
décédé le 11.7.2004
à l’âge de 59 ans


27 réponses à “Flic en Flac Cemetery

  1. Flic and flac? Would that be the Chinese pronunciation of Frick and Frack? =~)

  2. Flic-en-Flac is one of the few Mauritian place names that were inherited from the Dutch. It comes from Fried Landt Flaak, said to be the equivalent of “free land flat”.

  3. One source says: « There is much debate as to the etymology of the curious name; most likely it comes from the Dutch ‘fried landt flaak’ (meaning ‘free, flat land’), but the alternative, the ‘flic-flac’ sound made by sandals in the sucking mud as people walk through the large marsh behind the beach, is more evocative. »

  4. The sandals would be flip-flops, or in Arabic, shib-shib. These stand outside the bathroom door and you slip into them — you’ve already taken off your shoes to come in the house — before going into the bathroom, where the floor is always wet (you don’t want to know).

  5. A. J. P. Crown

    I love graveyards. My favourite one here is « We love you Dad ». Interesting, the various asymmetrical ones with a cyma reversa-like S-shape on top. I think it’s fairly unusual to have an asymmetrical gravestone. James Colin Mayer has handles on his, so his family can easily get him out again. There’s only one with a photograph on the gravestone; that’s become quite popular in Norway. Anonymous has the prettiest, Rococo grave.

  6. There’s only one with a photograph on the gravestone
    And there’s only one for whom a cigarette and a drink were brought. (There are several others with a picture, but I can’t show all of the cemetery’s graves in this post.)

    I think it’s fairly unusual to have an asymmetrical gravestone.
    Is it? I’ve never paid attention to this point, but I can’t say I’m surprised when I see them and I don’t think it’s that uncommon here. Why should it be symmetrical, by the way?

    James Colin Mayer has handles on his, so his family can easily get him out again.
    Maybe, but I think the handles are there to open the “caveau” (vault) to put more people in. He is probably the most well-known person in the cemetery. He used to be a famous cyclist, until quite late in his career (he probably won several races aged over forty), and he died while riding a bicycle, in Russia where he accompanied his son who was taking part in the world’s championships. Apparently it’s been quite something to be able to get his body back, to bury him in Flic en Flac, his family having to bribe a number of Russian officials.

    Anonymous has the prettiest, Rococo grave.
    Yes, I quite like this one too. If there wasn’t that ring of corals around the small mound, it would even be hard to tell that some body was buried there.

    Cette tombe en sandwich entre le ciel et l’eau
    Ne donnera pas une ombre triste au tableau
    Mais un charme indéfinissable
    Les baigneuses s’en serviront de paravent
    Pour changer de tenue et les petits enfants
    Diront chouette un château de sable !

  7. A. J. P. Crown

    I suppose they’re really symmetrical, it’s just that the axis is perpendicular to the body’s symmetry. My guess is that’s the reason why people would like something bilaterally symmetrical–if indeed they would, I haven’t done a survey–but so that it’s in harmony with the body. Myself, I’ll probably get cremated, it’s cheaper, otherwise I’d like an asymmetrical one. Of architects graves Le Corbusier’s isn’t bad, Christopher Wren has the great line on his « Lector, si monumentum requiris circumspice », because he designed St. Paul’s, where he’s interred, but look at Carlo Scarpa: he did the fabulous Brion Cemetery as well as having made a nice one for himself. I think the trick is make something that isn’t body-shaped and something that’s almost equally important from all directions.

  8. The plate on Le Corbusier’s grave is pretty awful with all its yellow, white, red and blue, but I find the tiny cross fairly amusing. Dali would probably have found it very Protestant*, even if in his own case his grave is the sternest of all since he was buried under a stone without any marking, his name appearing only on a plate fixed to the crypt’s wall.

    Scarpa was apparently buried vertically (feet down I suppose), which is definitely not common. Maybe he was the reincarnation of one of Emperor Qin’s terracotta soldiers.


    * Alors que j’avais à peine vingt et un ans, je me suis retrouvé un jour à déjeuner chez mon ami Roussy de Sales en compagnie de l’architecte masochiste et protestant Le Corbusier qui est, comme on le sait, l’inventeur de l’architecture d’auto-punition. Le Corbusier me demanda si j’avais des idées sur l’avenir de son art. Oui, j’en avais. J’ai d’ailleurs des idées sur tout. Je lui répondis que l’architecture serait « molle et poilue » et j’affirmais catégoriquement que le dernier grand génie de l’architecture s’appelait Gaudi dont le nom, en catalan, signifie « jouir », de même que Dali veut dire « désir ». Je lui expliquai que la jouissance et le désir sont le propre du catholicisme et du gothique méditerranéens réinventés et portés à leur paroxysme par Gaudi. En m’écoutant, Le Corbusier avait l’air d’avaler du fiel.

    (Salvador Dali, Les Cocus du vieil art moderne, Grasset, pp. 33 & 34.)

  9. Cremation is a family tradition for me.

  10. And, John, what do you do with the ashes afterwards?

  11. My husband was cremated, although his family tradition is burial. There wasn’t much choice, as he died in an airplane that crashed and burned. He was skydiving. Afterwards, the ashes were scattered from the air by skydivers who released black smoke at the same time.

    I suppose there are laws about where you can dispose of ashes, like whether they can be scattered on public water, but the reality is that the ashes are given to relatives and no one sees what happens to them. My husband’s ashes were scattered over private land, a forest that he loved and spent much time in, looking for mushrooms and raccoons.

    My Swedish neighbor in a different Chicago suburb had the ashes of her two deceased husbands plus her brother in her kitchen. People joked that she would need to be careful not to mix them up with the coffee.

  12. What happened to the comment I just made here?


    It landed in the spam box, I don’t know why.Siganus

  13. When there was that very bad accident in the tunnel under the Mont Blanc, which resulted in a blazing fire, a number of Italians died in the flames. I remember seeing a documentary in which it was said that for these Catholics it was apalling that their loved ones had disappeared in the flames. (Maybe it is considered that you ended up in hell; or maybe you are supposed to rest in a sanctified land.) It seems to me, though, that usually Catholics do not mind so much to be cremated. But I may be wrong here.

  14. He was Catholic, or at least his family was, but they didn’t seem to mind about the cremation, at least they all said he was in heaven. If that is true I will need a pact with the other establishment and an eternal unlisted number. When some of his other family members died they had the body at the funeral home so that people could come and visit with the family. I think it makes it easier for the family when they can see the body.

    Usually there is a « visitation », usually at the funeral home, where all the friends and the public can view the body (I go to these for people I work with, even though I don’t know their family), and a « funeral », usually at the church, although there is usually a viewing of the body beforehand. Then they close the casket and put it at the front of the church for the funeral. After the funeral, the family and close friends go to the cemetery for the burial.

  15. for these Catholics it was apalling that their loved ones had disappeared in the flames

    My husband’s mother was catholic, his father not. They did an autopsy — since it was a public accident, I think it was required. His mother was very relieved to find out he died from the crash and not from the fire. I read the death certificate and did not find it at all comforting.

  16. My parents were buried in a single (small) hole on their land. My wife wants to be scattered there. For myself I don’t care; it’s up to whoever survives me.

    Until 1963 the Catholic Church forbade cremation; it is now permitted but disfavored, provided it is not done with the intention of denying the resurrection of the body. Since 1997, in the U.S. and Canada, but not (as far as I know) elsewhere, a funeral mass may be held in the presence of cremated remains.

    Protestant denominations are much more accepting of cremation. Eastern Christianity, Islam, Orthodox Judaism, the Bahá’í Faith, and Zoroastrianism continue to reject cremation absolutely.

  17. A. J. P. Crown

    I think I’d like to be buried sitting on a chair in the garden; with my head above ground level, inside a goldfish bowl.

  18. Gruesome, AJP!

    My mother decided decades before her death that she would leave her body to science, and she had signed a document to that effect. She died in a nursing home, and that was the last anyone saw of her. My sisters organized a memorial ceremony at the local Catholic church. There was organ music, some prayers, and a eulogy composed by a church volunteer, but no coffin, funeral, ashes or other tangible recognition of her fate. I found the whole thing very strange.

  19. Yes, gruesome, AJP — but it made me laugh this morning. Would you have your eyes opened or closed? And would you like to be mummified before?

    John, you can understand why Parsis may not be cremated: fire, together with earth, water and metal, is a sacred element. It may not be polluted by a dead corpse, just like earth and water. This is why Parsis leave their dead ones on top of funerary towers to be eaten by vultures. Some time ago there had been a decline in the vulture population of India and it became a problem for the Parsis, but I don’t know if now things are back to normal or not.

    However, I don’t understand why Bahais wouldn’t be cremated. I don’t know much about this faith, but it seemed to me that it was also influenced by Hinduism, in which cremation is the standard practise (despite what can be seen in some of the pictures above).

  20. I’m having a hear time visualizing AJP’s final resting spot. Is all of him in the fishbowl or just his head? This would make him look like George Jetson.

    leave her body to science
    This was occasionally done in a hospital where I worked, although I never saw it. Here it’s done by an organization called ROBI (Regional Organ Bank of Illinois), that arrives very soon after the death and harvests (they call it that) the organs — everything from corneas to skin. It’s definitely not for me, but someone I knew who saw it said the ROBI people work very quickly and efficiently, and are very reverent towards the deceased, and true believers in what they do.

  21. Someone was buried in a car. Cadillac? James Dean?

  22. A. J. P. Crown

    I have to solve the problem of condensed moisture inside my goldfish bowl unless I’m buried on the moon (eyes open, I think). Sorry Nij, I shouldn’t have put in that comma.

    There was that problem of Alistair Cooke’s life after death.

  23. AJP Crown, the human iceberg, with 90% below the surface.

    I keep imagining someone coming across this sphere on the ground and being unable to resist the urge to kick it like a ball. Sorry, now I’ve planted that image with you.

  24. Baha’i is an offshoot of Islam, in the same sense that Christianity is an offshoot of Judaism. My guess would be that Baha’i inherited the prohibition from Islam.

  25. I don’t think more commas would help, AJP. I think you would need a drawing, but I hesitate to even mention it, as your heirs might come across it one day and think it was serious.

  26. Hi

    We live in flic en flac. Do you arrange cremation at the cemetary ?

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