Heidi Trautmann

585 - In Memoriam Peggy Macalpine of Karaman

By Heidi Trautmann


Peggy was known to everyone as the daredevil, the oldest paraglider at 104; she did it twice and landed in the Book of Records. But no one ever talks of her other hobbies.

I have met her as a regular guest of the Ladies Lunches Angelina di Fazio and Deirdre Guthrie had organized back in 2005 with the idea to get active and creative women together. I still wonder what they had in mind that would come out of it. I often came to sit next to Peggy and I found it interesting to talk to her, at her age of nearly 100 years then; she was perfectly clear and I found that others talked about rather boring things compared to her. I was amused.

One day she told me that she was collecting dolls, original famous ones and so I asked her if I could visit her with a group of friends among them one German artist who made dolls herself. And I remember it well when we all went to see her in the charming small house just before you enter Karaman Centre and she was waiting for us with many photo albums and stories to tell.

Unfortunately I lost the notes where I noted down how many dolls she had collected in her lifetime.

Peggy and her daughter Elisabeth waved us in, I think we were eight of us, and found the coffee table laid on the terrace. Thus we learnt that she had to have one extra room just for the many dolls including the doll houses, beds and wardrobes to hold all the dresses. That was the precondition when she moved to Cyprus in 2004 to join her daughter, she would come with her entire entourage. There were dolls in her collection of many famous doll makers, also Kathe Kruse, a German designer. She had them all in an album. But she did not only collect dolls, she also collected old postcards as far back as the 19th century.

We were finally to follow her to her dolls’ empire, and as we entered the room we felt a little like Alices in Wonderland, one got the feeling that it was a true world and Peggy looked like the queen of the dolls’ empire as she stood there with the white curls on her head, beautifully dressed, that twinkle in her eyes and her humorous smile.

May she find her empire intact wherever she is now, we shall never forget that afternoon in her wonderland.

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