Little known Lotta facts for a Friday: her “paparazzi” encounter in Edmonton

Lotta HitschmanovaLotta Hitschmanova was perhaps the most recognizable woman in Canada in the 1960s and 1970s. In a 1973 interview, she shared a remarkable incident that took place in Edmonton:

“I want to tell you another story which happened in the Edmonton Hotel. I had come in from a very strenuous day. That day I had spoken seven times and I was very tired and aching to get into my room and to be alone.

“And suddenly a gentleman came and as I was waiting for the elevator, he tried to read the name of the emblem of my uniform and he finally deciphered it and he said, ‘So you are Lotta,’ and I said yes and by that time the door opened and I disappeared into the elevator.

“But that was not good enough for him. He went to the reception desk and he asked if he could go upstairs into my room and meet me. And of course the reception clerk said, ‘Oh no, Dr. Hitschmanova never sees anybody, you cannot do it.’

“So he decided to wait, cleverly, because he knew that very probably I would have to come down sometime to eat in the coffee shop. And this I did and suddenly he came from behind and he asked me whether he could sit down and talk to me. And how could I say no.

“So he sat down and he said, ‘You have made my day, you are the second celebrity I have met in 20 years.’ And I said, ‘Oh, am I? Who was the first one?’ He said, ‘A band player.’ So there are thousands of these little stories and they keep me going when things look very hard and we are very far away from our objectives.”

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