Back to Bulgaria

I am in Sofia, the capital of my homeland, Bulgaria. The jetlag is starting to hit me and I can sense my brain slowing down, which probably is not bad anyway. It is wonderful to be here during the summer. The weather is lovely and even a bustling, dusty and busy city like Sofia is very pleasant and inviting. Of course there are plenty of quirky things about being here. I spent close to an hour trying to find the Baha’i Center by reading street signs too confusing even for someone who grew up in Bulgaria: There were the overlapping street names — several houses on the street had two numbers, one for each of the active street names, i.e. the same house would be #1 Mura St. and #20 Boyanski Vaszhod. Then, there were the streets who had to zigzag around to follow their names. And then, there were the puzzled looks of the people on the street who kept on answering my questions with “I don’t know, I don’t live here”. Yet in the end, after a prayer, when I decided to ask not for the street address but just for the Baha’i Center, a nice lady showed me the way.

The teaching project, coordinated by a fine young man from England, is still in the works. We are still trying to identify activities and receptive population but the important thing is that the first steps have been taken. Next Wednesday and Thursday few other travel teachers will come — from Greece, Macedonia and Germany — and hopefully I will be able to assit them and do some door-to-door teaching using the visual presentation.

My first teaching opportunity came already — as soon as I showed up in the Lufthansa airplane at Dulles Airport. As I was taking my seat, I noticed that the lady who was sitting next to me was greeted by her passing daugther who had to go and sit somewhere way back. I offered to switch my seat with her so they could be together. She gladly accepted and I left a “Baha’is believe in… ” card on the seat to greet the new passenger…

In the mean time, I am thoroughly enjoying the Bulgarian culture and visiting with my family. There is something very refreshing about spending time with my brother and sister-in-law, pouring our hearts out and after that deep, honest conversation, feeling better about life, universe and everything else.

Tomorrow I will coincidentally attend the engagement party of a nephew of mine, and later in the week I will go on a mountain hiking trip with another Baha’i friend from my hometown.

Last but not least, my dad will celebrate his 75th birthday and I am sure having his two sons together again will be the best gift he could ask for.

As I am wrapping up this post, I can smell the delicious flavor of my sister-in-law’s home cooking! Yummy! Not bad for a first day back in Bugaria.

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