Heidi Trautmann

1089: A piece of Cypriot History – In memoriam Elsie Slonim

Her last page was turned today,  26 Jan 2021

By Heidi Trautmann


It is about ten years ago that I met Elsie Slonim for the first time for an interview on the occasion of the publication of her book ‘Lemons from Paradise’. We arranged to meet at the restaurant ‘Hamur’ in Nicosia near the Ledra Palace Crossing. I had done some research on her life and knew that she was 95 years old and so I expected to meet a fragile old lady. The owner of the restaurant, Ahmet Çavusoglu, who unfortunately no longer lives,  pointed her out to me  ‘Here comes my friend Elsie…and he rushed off to help her out of her small red car.  I saw her approaching… an energetic woman with  a full dark mane and deep red painted lips. That was 2013.  I published our interview in Cyprus Observer and my website. What a woman. In the following years I met her on several occasions, and learnt more and more about her and her family’s extraordinary life. See my articles under the following link:



Our last encounter was in 2017 at the Goethe Institute in Nicosia, where friends of hers had come together to celebrate her 100th birthday and when I delivered my heartfelt wishes and a birthday kiss I whispered into her ear, Please Elsie, let me know your recipe which keeps you so young and energetic…. And she whispered back: “Keep working”. She had just published her third book

‘Ahead of Time – The First Hundred Years’ in German and English.


When I read the sad news this morning that she had died in her house, the only private residence in the military zone in Nicosia/Dereboyu,  I could hardly believe it.  Elsie, who had lived a full life, and who had loved it.

Rest in peace, Elsie, you will not be forgotten.  

Elsie Slonim 100 years
Elsie Slonim 100 years

Elsie's birthday

Elsie's book launch at Arucad Library Girne

Her last book
Her last book 'Ahead of Time - The first hundred Years'

Web Site Counter(web site counter)  [impressum