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 mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures

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mike&tanya
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PostSubject: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Sun Aug 15, 2010 6:47 pm

First topic message reminder :

I intend to work my way through our various trips by year, and i will put places that you might find interesting in capitals, all of which can be looked up on internet to get much more detail.
2004
When i first met tanya in London, I like most people did not know much about Bulgaria. My first visit was in October (2 months after we got married) to visit her Tanya,s parents, who live in a village called Kliment which is close to the towns of Sopot - Karlova. We flew into Sofia Airport and were met by 2 of her close friends, the plan was to stop over night and go the the embassy the next morning before traveling on to the village. Unfortunatly no one told us that we had to get there before 10.00am otherwise they will not deal with you, and yes you guessed it we got there 10.20am. This meant another day in Sofia, I thought thats ok we will do a bit of sight-seeing (silly me), I was with 3 good looking fashion concsious woman so I got dragged up and down the up-market clothing shops for most of the day. We stayed another night in a very nice hotel in the foothills just outside of the city, and managed to get the paperwork sorted the next morning and get on our way to the village.
I got a very nice surprise on arrival in the village, the surrounding scenery was quite outstanding, being surrounded by lowwooded hills on one side that seem to go on forever, and acroos the valley much higher more rugged hills above Karlova, I never get tired of looking at this. I got a very warm welcome from Tanya,s parents and some of the neighbors, and enjoyed looking around the there property, which consisted of a traditionally built mud block bungalow, with a massive barn and a big plot of land full of all kinds of vegetables and fruit trees. There was also 13 sheep, a donkey, cats and a dog, it seems that during the communist times Tanya,s dad was a well respected shepherd until he retired
We spent a few days in and around the village and SOPOT - KARLOVA (they are almost joined together and I think of them as twin towns),and then went onto what was to become the first of many sight-seeing trips over the years. We went to SHIPKA-MONESTERY (very nice), which has a beautiful gold coloured domed roof and like all monestery,s full of brightly coloured icons and murals. From there we went onto an open air museum called ETAR (well worth a visit) which is full of original buildings dating back through the centuries and also demonstrations of Bulgarian culture and crafts. We then went onto a town called GABROVA which has a museum of humour (it was ok).
At the end of our holiday we were taken to Sofia Airport by a friend from the village, and on the way called into a very well preserved town called KOPRIVSTITSA, which although our time was limited , what i saw was very nice and I intend to go back and have a better look one day.

That it I hope you enjoy this installment and I will add more soon.

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PostSubject: Re: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Fri Aug 08, 2014 6:10 pm

Thanks for your update Mike good to hear from you again, great news about your apartment and Debt free is what we all aim for and you have done it so well done to both of you
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PostSubject: Re: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Tue Aug 12, 2014 12:02 pm

Nice update and all good on the apartment sale. Keep us upto date with the visit c

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PostSubject: Re: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Tue Sep 16, 2014 12:58 pm

Thanks for the latest news although I seemed to have missed this one, not had tinternet for a while but should be all fine now
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PostSubject: Re: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Thu Jan 01, 2015 3:52 pm

Its been a while since I updated the diary so here goes;


2014
As mentioned in the last instalment, I flew out on 25th August and was met as usual by Tanya and her sisters son.We travelled to the village (Kliment) which is about a 40 minute drive away, and got the usual bear hugs from her mum. We spent the first few days in the village, including buying and fitting a flat packed kitchen wall and base unit (which was a challenge) as Tanya was being driven mad by her mums use of space (basically every room was used as bits of kitchen).Her mum now thinks she has an ultra modern kitchen, bless her, in fact it was a couple of cheapish units, as in time we plan to modernise the whole bungalow (sympathetically of course).
On the fourth day we drove to Pomorie, this time staying at a good friends small hotel just along the road from our old apartment (the sale had eventually gone through with no problems). there are a number of reasons why I am happy that we sold the apartment when we did,
a) no more repairs every time we went there and
b) they have just started building a 5 floor apartment block directly opposite on a piece of land that was a car park. This block has ruined any sea view from the balconies that we once had and as it will be taller so the apartment will be looked down upon (thank God it all went through ok)
We spent a couple of days catching up with all of our friends in the area, and looking around the heavily built up area ( which I have christened the Russian Las Vagas) , luckily the older part still maintains the old character of the place. On the third day we went out on a friends boat with a big group of friends, to an island off of Bourgas, which has just opened up as a tourist attraction. Due the heavy seas (which I enjoyed but it was not so much fun for everyone), we more or less had the place to ourselves as the tourist boats had cancelled. On the way back we stopped off in a sheltered area and swam (unfortunately I had a heavy cold so had to give it a miss).
The next day 4 of us drove to Istanbul for a 3 night break near Taksim Square. The journey was good until we got close to Istanbul and then it turned into shear madness (I thought as a Driving Instructor I had seen lots of mad, bad driving in the past, but nothing prepared me for that !) Anyway forgetting the journey the 3 full days we had there were very good, we did all of the usual tourist sites Blue Mosque, Topkapi Palace, boat trip, another Palace which I forgot the name of, another couple of Mosques and a bit of the Grand Bazzar. We finished it off with traditional Hamas before heading back to Bulgaria.
We stayed over night in the hotel back in Pomorie and intended to set out in the morning, but it was raining so hard the roads were flooding, so we delayed our leaving till the afternoon, the journey was a bit unpleasant at first but the further we got away from the coast the better the weather got. We spent the rest of the holiday in and around the village, I did get to use the Suzuki jeep a couple of times but was advised not to go up the mountains as the logging lorries had ruined the trails with there big wheels (due to all of the heavy rain). I did get involved with the making of Rakia at the village stills, which was very interesting and I took a few photo,s and met a few more villagers, there can't be many that do not know me now. Sadly I did not get to meet up with Barry (Bgbazz) as we could not work out convenient times to suit both of us, so it will have to be next time. i am actually coming out in February for 10 days during which we plan to have a 3 day trip for skiing in Pamporova.

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PostSubject: Re: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Thu Jan 01, 2015 5:40 pm

Hi Guys

T for the update and congrats on selling the apartment. Sounds like overall the holiday was a good one.with a few hiccups along the way. We went to Turkey some years ago and I must say the driving experience frightend the life out of me and that was on a coach, we had a 5 hour journey and had a fair few near misses. I asked the rep do you have many accidents here - to my surprise, he smilled and said quite boastfully 'Yes we are number in the world' Enough said

Hope the snow clears by the time you come out. We arrived 29 March this year and had snow then rain for 3 months. I can only remember a few weeks of actual summer. . I am hoping next year will be better.. Keep us updated when you can. g

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PostSubject: Re: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Thu Jan 01, 2015 8:15 pm

Thanks for the update Mike. Happy New Year to you both
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PostSubject: Re: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Sat Jan 03, 2015 6:52 am

Hi Berni and Chris, thanks for the replies, and of course a belated Happy New Year to everyone, from Tanya and I.
Berni its strange whenever I read about all of the other members problems with heavy wind, rain, and snow, I ask Tanya how it is with her parents in the village and after she talks to them on the phone she normally replies that they are not having any of the bad weather, and in some cases she reports that the weather is very nice. They did have some of the heavy rain a while back, but nothing like some parts of the country suffered. Its almost like they are living in a different country. They put it down to being protected by the hills on one side and the mountains on the other, for instance they have not had any snow yet over this autumn/winter, which is kind of ironic as I am hoping to get a bit of skiing in.
There has been some snow in Pamporova (which is only about 2-3 hours drive away), but not as much as I am sure they (and I) would like, but to be honest the best ski conditions in most resorts are usually February/March. I have skied in other countries where the best snow has come just as they are shutting the lifts down at the end of the season, and you can only look at it wishing you could get in amongst it.
But i guess with all of this global warming nothing is ever going to be predictable about the weather anymore.
Regards Mike.

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PostSubject: Re: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Sat Jan 03, 2015 5:29 pm

Yes indeed it is strange Mike - :: in Dobrich about 1.1/2 hours have no snow yet and said windows are all open. Still Baba Ginka tells me it will be toplow after Tuesday s g

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PostSubject: Re: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Sun Jan 04, 2015 9:22 am

Thank you I have only just found this but what a pleasant and interesting read.
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PostSubject: Re: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Sun Jan 04, 2015 10:14 am

Sounds like you had a great trip and really got to see some nice places and people. Look forward to your next instalment.
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PostSubject: Re: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Wed Jul 08, 2015 2:53 pm

Have to agree it does sound like a great adventure, I love reading about other peoples adventures but I have to say your are extra special. Thank you for sharing I'm sure I'll be back to read them over again as I have already and every time I get something new from them. T s
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PostSubject: Re: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Wed Jul 08, 2015 3:48 pm

 Thank you so much s

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PostSubject: Re: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Fri Jul 10, 2015 9:02 am

We went over in February and spent a few days visiting friends in the area and sorting out the fire wood into the spaces in the wall that we had built some years ago ( but was not used as Tanya,s mum did not want to make the wall dirty) she came around to our way of thinking in the end, and i spent some time tidying up the wood to look better.
we then went on to Pamporova with friends for a 4 night stay at The Grand Monastery apartment complex. The sking was good as the snow was very good this year, i intended to ski solidly for 3 days but forgot that i am now both older and less fit than when I used to ski on a regular basis. So ended up only skiing for 3 half days and that knackered me, on the last day it snowed heavily so finished earlier and had a couple of hot mold wines. I flew home and Tanya stayed for an extra one and a half months and came home with Tina her best friend who stayed with us in London for 2 months ( his has now become a regular thing).While Tanya was there she organised a pair of excellent builders to raise the roof of the bungalow and fit in 2 loft style rooms and a bathroom and big balcony overlooking the Stara Plannina mountains. they are going to start this for the whole month of July so I will be going over for the whole of the month.

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PostSubject: Re: mike& tanya,s Bulgarian adventures   Mon Jul 13, 2015 8:28 am

Well done you and yes we all get older but no one tells us that we aren't as young as we use to be so we think we can still do the same things we've always done. Hope all goes well with the bungalow.
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PostSubject: subject   Sun Jul 19, 2015 5:24 am

How is the project coming along Mike?
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