Scribbles from Bulgaria

A Travelogue in statuses – Samia Tamrin Ahmed

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Day 1: Dubai Airport Terminal 2

Planes to obscure locations fly from this terminal . Where do we go from here?

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Day 1: Sofia

The sun came out because I am in the city!
I am living in the house with her dog. He is over friendly. I get all nervous.

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Day 2: Pernik

Went to check out the Surva festival where the entire Balkan region showcased their colours, costumes and sounds of bells to scare evil vibes in the Kukeri traditions. Very cool festival and I am glad I am here at this time of the year. I also have a picture with a real Kuker who grabbed me for a photo op! So many feathers and chicken had to be sacrificed to make the elaborate costumes!

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Day 3: Belogradchik

Long journey by car to see some fascinating rock formation. The road leading to the park and fortress is cool too. We wore our PIPO shirts today!
Magura, the oldest cave was long and slippery and had interesting stalactites n stalagmites. I covered myself well hoping the bats above will not poop on me.The little trains work in summer so we walked back. Also the 4500 yr old rock paintings are not shown in winter.

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Day 4-5: Sandanski+Melnik

A 2.5 hour drive through mountains and the gorge brought us to the city where the sun dances. Doggie was in the car….he was calmer when we got to the highway. I am so full of dolma and soup now. I caught a cold and have been waking up at Dhaka time.

We went to the smallest town named Melnik where about 300 people live. its quite a tourist spot and is famous for its wine. And there is a special historic house having a cave inside. On the way down from that ”hike”, i bumped into the face of a doggie. Yes, that is actually possible.

Day 5: Rila Monastery

Are we crazy? Why are we hiking in the snow for the elusive ossuary?

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Day 6: Plovdiv

After a day trip to one of the oldest cities in the world (has such cute doll house style buildings on the longest pedestrian street in Europe!!!), we got back to Serdika. The good bus man dropped us near the house thankfully. Then I made the egg bake thing wth mushrooms and peas. Took the free walking tour but Zlati and I had a pre and post walking tour of our own!

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Day 7: Sofia to Veliko Tarnavo

Leaving Serdika/city of wisdom …towards the old capital for 2 days of solo travel. Then I must find my way to the ten year anniversary meeting!
oh I will miss the doggie here. he has been friendly and affectionate, sometimes too much and that made me nervous hehe but hes a sweet one!

Arrived. Missed the bus to fortress station so decided to walk…some uphill walks and downhill runs with my luggage. Found hostel which is apparently a 200 yr old house and we are nestled on the mountain side. Its my solo trip days, went for a walk soon inside the fortress walls. It was great, with a church with art to match the fantasies of graphic novelists. Rain was threatening to come.

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It did come when I went to see the monument by the old town streets. A great view from that plain but oh, the rain…came walking back and stopped for a creamy cake. The streets seemed unfamiliar but soon saw the lights upon the fortress walls. Fell in love with the city and felt guilty about my decision to leave like a thief next morning.

 

Day 8: Veliko Tarnavo> Ruse> Bucharest

Coldy and snowy with ice queen environment around the highway as we came around. Put on tights underneath my jeans at the central station loo so its all better now. Now to cross the river for an important meeting.

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A walk and greedy shopping in Viennese Ruse. Minibus to Giurgiu. Crossed the Danube in a bridge of friendship. Faced sweet interrogation thanks to my passport.

Byebye Bulgaria!

 

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