Artur Metani had accompanied Robert Elsie for 25 years. He did the same
on this last trip. For him, Robert was a friend and spiritual father.
“I didn’t expect this trip, to take Elsie’s dead body to Theth. He was a wonderful man with a big heart. He could immediately understand me. He was a very intelligent man”, said Artur Metani, the driver of the famous Canadian scholar who studied Albanian language.
Elsie’s funeral was made with the local traditions.
“We are glad that a foreigner comes to honor us, our country, the Theth Church and the men of Theth”, says Prak Gjergj Terthorja, Theth resident.
But what does his partner, Stephan Trierweiler, say about this?
“It was not a testament of Robert to have his body resting in Theth, but since he left it to me to decide, it was logical for him to have this as his final home. I used to tell him, when we talked even jokingly about this stuff, that he should rest eternally in Kosovo or Albania. He would always say that I should not underestimate the bureaucratic obstacles in these countries”, says Stephan.
Roland Tasho was the one who gave him Albanian traditional clothes.
“The idea to have him resting in Theth with an Albanian popular costume seemed brilliant to me”, he said.
Robert Elsie will be remembered as author of many articles and works focusing on the Albanian language and culture. But what will happen with everything that Robert left behind? According to Stephan, the bigger projects were completed, fortunately.
Stephan says that he will visit Albania twice a year, now that his partner will be resting here eternally.
“Bob belongs to me. He will always be in my heart. But on the other hand, I am convinced that he belongs to the Albanian people as well”, Stephan says.