Sunday, August 21, 2005

okay, a few more things!

bulgaria is gorgeous- did i mention that before? we spent our first few days in a ski resort about an elevation of about 4,000 feet. most of the country is mountainous (is that a word?) terrain, so those hiking boots will come in quite handy!

bulgaria was having a small confusion with the parliament, but this weekend it was finally settled, and the former majority party is now the minority party, and no one has a majority. people seem to like their president, but i'm not sure about the prime minister. bulgaria sent troops to Iraq, so most people also like our president.

the currency here is called the lev. the exchange rate is currently near 1.66 leva for 1 dollar, so things are not so bad, but a few years back, the dollar was equal to roughly 4 leva. as bulgaria nears accession to the EU (jan 1 2007), i'm sure the exchange rate will reflect the presence of invincible euro.

I think one of the interesting things about bulgaria (as if i could quantify that...) is that it seems to be very modern. my house has a computer and tv, but no fridge- there are hardly any trashcans to be found either. that was very inarticulate, but if you forgive me, i try my best to think in bulgaria (which means i have a vocabulary roughly the size of a 2 year old child- if that!)

across the street, we have a neighbor named tony!! he, however, is only 3 years old- so he's not much for talking. i gave him some american candy though, and seemed to break the ice! :) hopefully he and i can visit more, and I can learn more about basic sentence structure from him. you may laugh, but i'm serious! today we saw a baby that was a few weeks old, and i joked with my fellow trainees that the baby probably knew more bulgarian that i do!

this week, my family will probably be invited to a 'na gosti.' this is a big dinner party where we eat a lot, drink rakia (like brandy, only, you MUST sip or your might pass out...) and talk for hours and hour. na gosti can last for 6 or 7 hours! anyway, a fellow trainee (alex) is staying with my host family's niece...and since THEY are english teachers, i will be able to understand a little!

more often than not, i've found that when i'm confused about what to say in bulgarian, instead of using english i use italian! i thought i had forgotten it all, but in desperation, my mind is trying of so very hard to help me communicate!!! dear brain...if only italiano was helpful...

okay, i'm sure that was boring, but ce'la vie! obviously, my french is as good as my bulgarian! ;)

2 Comments:

At 10:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bulgaria sounds like a great place. Tell me more about the fridge. How far is it to your training site from your house and what form of transportation do you take? Sounds like I would love to drive there and the seat belt thing in interesting.
Mom

 
At 5:31 AM, Anonymous Alfie said...

Was just listening to some David Sedaris clips on NPR that sound like similar to your experiences.

http://www.npr.org/programs/specials/lists/sedaris/

I recommend "Inside French Healthcare" ... it's good to know about a country's healthcare system before you even look at the governmental structures.

C'est la vie!

Stay healthy,

Alfie.

 

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