Across the Atlantic, far from Trump Tower, a tiny town in Slovenia where Melania Trump grew up feted its native daughter’s unlikely path to the White House as if the home team had won the championship, her childhood friends said.
Trump, who hails from Sevnica, an industrial town of 5,000, inspired a special ode composed and performed by a local band and a special breakfast of yogurt, fruit, and sweets bearing her name, her closest friend from her youth, Mirjana Jelancic, told ABC News.
“The whole town of Sevnica spent the night in a bar, waving American flags and watching the U.S. presidential results come through,” Jelancic said.
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Melania Trump -- then named Melanija Knavs -- was born in then-communist Sevnica in 1970, and spent her formative years living in a third-floor apartment of a sparse building in the industrial part of town.
Her friends said Trump, now 46, had become a local hero, and scores of residents eagerly kept an eye on the U.S. presidential election and her husband Donald, the Republican presidential nominee.
At dawn, when it became clear he had become the United States’ president-elect, they rolled out the champagne and “toasted to victorious Sevnica’s son-in-law,” Jelancic said.
As the new ode to Melania told it, the former model “went from Sevnica to the top of the world because she found the right husband.”
The celebration extended beyond little Sevnica, an hour outside Slovenia’s capital. The country’s Prime Minister, Miro Cerar, tweeted his congratulations to the Trumps. “I am sure,” he added in a statement, “that the president-elect already knows a lot about Slovenia.”
When Donald Trump takes office in January, his wife will become the first foreign-born First Lady since Louisa Adams.
“It is a true fairy-tale story,” Dijana Kosor, a childhood friend who modeled with Trump, told ABC News. “A beautiful and wonderful Melania, a girl from Sevnica, will be in the White House. It is so romantic. She will make a great First Lady.”
“I was rooting for her since the beginning, and today I am drunk from happiness,” Jelancic, now the principal of an elementary school, said. “We will throw a special party in Sevnica for the inauguration in January.”