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 Where did it go wrong?

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Equinus
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PostSubject: Where did it go wrong?   Tue Oct 16, 2012 8:32 pm

There seems to be a bit of sadness (bitterness?) about at the moment....either that or I am looking at all the wrong posts....where some members' new or long term stays in Bulgaria seem to have gone wrong causing them to return to the UK.

So, for all those who have/are going back home, can you share with us, in general terms of course, what made you give up on Bulgaria? It could be educational to those of us wanting to move out, and give us an idea, from the horses mouth, what we need to look out for.

I hope, being the eternal pessimist (according to Mr Eq!) that I do not wear rose tinted glasses, and know there will be difficult times ahead trying to settle into a new life in a totally new country. And nearer the time, after a couple of visits, we will no doubt have loads of questions about specific areas and what to look out for.

Hope this is not being too nosy!

Mrs Eq

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starlite
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PostSubject: Re: Where did it go wrong?   Tue Oct 16, 2012 10:05 pm

I have spent 6 winters here in bulgaria, they are beautiful but harsh, if your stocked and warm then you will be fine. last december i had a stroke and got to hospital where i got the treatment i needed, basic but ok. i got released just before christmas and then the snow arrived. :Headbang:there is no way you could get to hospital in the snow or no way an ambulance would get to you in the height of winter. so we have decided to escape the winters in bulgaria because of this fact, if you live in a rural area in an emergency im afraid you are very much on your own. c

there has been a major evacuation of british from 3 villages near us, it seems many have been found out that they are on benefits that they are not legally entitled to, rightly or wrongly they can no longer stay in bulgaria permanently. c

I like living in bulgaria, its a good life, but the winters are incredibly severe. be prepared. g

there will of course will be many different reasons why people leave bulgaria. g
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PostSubject: Where did it go wrong?   Wed Oct 17, 2012 7:01 am

I have just read that the dream could have turned sour! Well there is a thing called the 6 p's Prior planning prevents p**s poor perfomance. If this is the case that people buy here and then decide it's not for them then they havn't done thier research before jumping in with both feet.Like oldun who is almost Bulgarian knows the pitfalls of living over here. I met a chap at Practika in Varna in the Summer whilst I was looking for Gazeebo and he had been here for 7 years and could hardly speak a word of Bulgarian and quote "
I can't get a handle on this terrible language"
! Well all I can say is try harder as I lived in Hong Kong for 3 years and managed to speak some Cantonese and also Germany and I learnt pidgeon German but Canadian was easy.One of the the things to remember before moving out here for those of you in the UK is learn the cyliric alphabet which my wife and I did and you will be able to pronounce the words properly even if you don't understand them as you will be 50% on your way to grasping the language.
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Chris
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PostSubject: Re: Where did it go wrong?   Wed Oct 17, 2012 8:52 am

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
I met a chap at Practika in Varna in the Summer whilst I was looking for Gazeebo and he had been here for 7 years and could hardly speak a word of Bulgarian and quote "
I can't get a handle on this terrible language"
!

To be honest, I think a lot of folks go home because they can't speak / read / write.

Unlike some other EU countries, where nearly everyone speaks English, Bulgarians don't.

As speedgunner said, If you do want to enjoy your life here, learn the language and learn to speak ... it really is more than half the battle.
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PostSubject: Re: Where did it go wrong?   Wed Oct 17, 2012 9:58 am

It seems to me that Bulgaria is not geared up to deal with snow – even though it suffers from an annual influx of the white stuff with some regions experiencing snowfall from mid October right in to May! The airport in Sofia may be able to clear its runways so that planes can arrive and depart – but the access roads suffer terribly when snow falls and those in charge are not roused quickly enough to clear them! So, you can get to Bulgaria but getting around in the winter can be a problem. This doesn’t bode too well for those coming on winter holidays to Bulgaria and it should make anyone serious about buying property in Bulgaria. Aside from the snow impacting travel, it apparently has quite a dramatic and negative effect on the economy in Bulgaria too. Following heavy snowfall across Bulgaria an estimated 170 million levs were lost from the economy when the next day record numbers of Bulgarians failed to get in to work! Never mind though, the Bulgarians know how to party and spent billions on food, alcohol and fireworks during the festive period…not bad for a nation with the lowest standards of living and the poorest economy in the European Union! But even so, living in Bulgaria is an attractive prospect for those who can relocate and exist there without having to rely on the local economy for an income. After all, the cost of living is low, property remains affordable, the people are friendly and enjoy a good party…and snow can be fun too – if you don’t have to make it in to work in the morning!
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PostSubject: Re: Where did it go wrong?   Wed Oct 17, 2012 10:01 am

in reply to the two above post .....

even if you do all the reaserch that is /was possible and adhear to the six p,s...it can still go tits up....
i agree , learn the language ..but for some thats easier said than done..its not that people dont try ...but some just cant grasp it ..only enough to get by on
all one can do is their best on both those fronts ..and they should not be taken to task if they fail
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Equinus
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PostSubject: Re: Where did it go wrong?   Wed Oct 17, 2012 10:09 am

Really sorry to hear of your troubles Starlite, and from what we have gathered about the winters, you are certainly doing the sensible thing in returning for the winters. I hope it takes the worry out for you.

I agree about the language. There is a cd permanently in Mr Eq's car, which we prattle along to as we drive around. The basics are starting to sound familiar now. I find it intensely irritating at work when certain Eastern European staff members make no attempt to learn even the basics of the language of a country they have lived in for several years....though it has to be said that I know at least two of them understand very well, but choose not to. Others try so hard you just want to hug them, and we try to help where we can. I know it's not easy, and one chap, who I have tried to help a lot, still struggles after six years. But he tries, and is polite always. Unfortunately they tend to live in their own ex-pat communities so have no need to speak the language on a day to day basis. Definitely something to avoid. My biggest problem is I get my tongue in a twist over my own language never mind others (I have a language of my own! ) But I managed a bit of Greek so hopefully I can learn enough to at least be polite for our first visit. c

Ah, the alphabet. Mr Eq managed the Greek, and I could recognise lots on a sign, but never grasped it. Maybe that's a good thing and I won't get muddled between the two.

Mrs Eq

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PostSubject: Re: Where did it go wrong?   Wed Oct 17, 2012 10:22 am

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:
I met a chap at Practika in Varna in the Summer whilst I was looking for Gazeebo and he had been here for 7 years and could hardly speak a word of Bulgarian and quote "
I can't get a handle on this terrible language"
!

To be honest, I think a lot of folks go home because they can't speak / read / write.

Unlike some other EU countries, where nearly everyone speaks English, Bulgarians don't.

As speedgunner said, If you do want to enjoy your life here, learn the language and learn to speak ... it really is more than half the battle.

Chris writes, To be honest, I think a lot of folks go home because they can't speak / read / write.
My view, for what it is worth. I think it goes much deeper that that, a lot go home because "
Home is where the Heart is"
and many get home sick, miss family and the growing up of their grand-children, they leave for health reasons and various other reasons connected to Bulgarian bureaucracy and the slow and rigid systems of administration, not forgetting the crime aspect that continues to exist

Unlike some other EU countries, where nearly everyone speaks English, Bulgarians don't.
To get a true indication of your comment, I think you need to split the Bulgarian people into two age groups, the younger generation and the older generation. I have found that many of the younger (up to say 30-35 years old) generation do speak, and want to speak English, in fact my gardeners little girl age 5 years is getting 2 hours a day learning English at her school. When I saw her last week she could count up to 20 and almost get the alphabet correct c
As far as the older generation is concerned Chris, you are right, but it is fun trying to converse using sign language and different actions

If you do want to enjoy your life here, learn the language and learn to speak
If and when I decide to leave Bulgaria for good, it wont have anything to do with a language barrier. As I have already stated it goes much deeper than that, as most members on the various forum's will know and appreciate. I and my family love Bulgaria, love our villa , love the village and most of the people in it
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PostSubject: Re: Where did it go wrong?   Wed Oct 17, 2012 10:49 am

The answer l have is the Bulgarian system wasn't there when l wanted them to bring the corupt businesses to justice.l wanted these low life creatures to be investigated in their warped practices and have all their assets seized to sell off so to pay me back what they have stolen from me.
This has given me no choice but to leave since l ran out of money from crooked minds which they planned right from the start to leech money which had no connection to the service they provided.
The police said something like we cannot do anything,and the lawyer said he wanted money up front but cannot garrantee a justice in my favour.This attitude give the criminals the green light to flourish without being punished.

l say this to the Bulgarian government.lf they want the foreigner's to stay in the country.They must at all cost without any arguement to instigate a strong justice in the victims favour and to have the criminals investigated and seize every asset they have including the hidden bank accounts they could have in the country and abroad.All the money should be shared out to the victims and leave the criminal with nothing.
The police should have a more serious approach to corruption and take the appropiate action needed to help the victim.And the lawyer should not ask for money upfront when the victim has no money.The lawyer can wait after the verdict has been given where his or her share of the seized money is payed out.

lf the foreigner knows there is more security in justice,and less of the red tape in living.The bulgarian government will find the economy will be a big boost to the local economy which breeds jobs and better life styles.Corruption only destroys the economy and destablizes lifestyles.
lt is up to the Government to choose the two.Corruption or a non corrupt system.
lt's to late for me because the damage is done.But if the government wants the remainder to stay."
Well"
,the system must take the right action now
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PostSubject: Re: Where did it go wrong?   Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:48 am

I think you must look at the reasons why you want to move abroad in the first place is addressed before you look at why it fails.

Then if people are going back to the UK and not just from Bulgaria look at the reasons why.

Some people came to new lands with no jobs and no income so the prospects of happiness were never going to be that good.

Some people came after retirement but with failing health looking for a better climate, but there are 2 sides to BG and other areas Hot in Summer but very cold in Winter. So because of this the cold winter months puts a damper on peoples spirits. As has been said before you should always do research before you up sticks and move , even more so when you move abroad.

But do also remember that the UK is no longer the place it once was. You only have to look at the press to see many elderly people who suffer at the hands of the so called welfare state. I'm afraid as the saying goes 'You pay your money and make your choice'.

If people go back because of family reasons I question the reasoning. BG is only a 3 hour plane ride away and not the end of the world??? We have SKYPE and VoiP so speaking to children and grandchildren is no great problem but yes we miss the cuddles and hugs But we knew that when we made the big decision to leave.

Will we go back, I think not but never say never.

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Equinus
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PostSubject: Re: Where did it go wrong?   Wed Oct 17, 2012 1:19 pm

I can see that family, especially kids and grandchildren could create a pull back to the UK, I have seen a friend here wanting to up sticks and go to Australia to be around her grandchild, a fragile reason to move to the opposite side of the world, but she would have done it if she had been a couple of years younger. But then she would have left her younger daughter here.....who might have a child soon!

We have no kids, having married late, and none from previous partners either. Mr Eq's family live in Kent, which usually means a six to eight hour journey each way to see them, depending on how many traffic jams we get caught up in. A similar journey time from one of the Bulgarian airports to one of the London airports, including waiting. My sister is planning to do a similar thing as us but if they can sell their house they will have a huge lump to live off....if they sell!!! My brothers I never see. More likelihood of seeing all of them with a cheap holiday on offer!

And due to my working hours, we have no social lives, so no friends to speak of either. Sad innit? lol

We have just introduced the over 70s in-laws to Skype, which has made a difference to them. They have all the rest of the family, including grand and great grand kids all around, only Mr Eq lives away, and has done for many years, so of course he is the favourite. They want to try living with him full time!

The only fly in the ointment is the horse. It would be daft to take him all that way, and expose him to potentially lethal diseases if we can't even ride him, but equally you can't give a decent horse away at the moment never mind one with issues. At the moment, we are thinking retirement home or rehoming centre who find companion homes for the unrideable (better option....free and supervised!)

All in all, what we have got to lose is money....and we can't take it with us! What we have to gain is spending time together doing what we want to do and living a life we have always dreamed of. And we might have time to make friends too....a bonus! It may not work, for all sorts of reasons, but if we don't try we will never know, and will always wonder. And to stay in jobs we hate till we are too old to do anything? Hmmm..

Mrs Eq

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PostSubject: Re: Where did it go wrong?   Fri Oct 19, 2012 9:29 am

I was wondering the same thing as to why so many properties are for sale and there must be a myriad of reasons. In my case, I think I am different to many. I never actually chose to live abroad. Life after divorce meant I had to stay in Greece to work (and eventually have a business) in order to protect my interest in our Greek 'ruin'. Life was difficult but fun. Then I met my Hero and we worked hard for 7 years in our restaurant. However, at 64 dancing away till the early hours (part of the job on our 'Greek Nights') began to be too much for me plus a drop in tourism and annual hikes in rent. Since Greece was in the euro by then, it was obvious to me that my basic pension would not be enough for long and the expense of renovating the beautiful 'ruin' (it really was) would have taken too much of my meagre capital. Bulgaria it was where I could afford a nice property with land.
In both countries we had to integrate and learn enough language to do this successfully. You don't have to be fluent but the alphabet is a must and understanding quite essential. Speaking not quite so important with the use of sign language especially if you are in a friendly village.
As you all know, we have many Bulgarian friends and do everything the Bulgarian way we possibly can including 'bodging' jobs to keep costs down. Bodge jobs can work with a little know-how.
Now people will be asking why the decision to leave after all these years abroad, 8 of them(this month) in Bulgaria. First off, I have very mixed feelings. My Hero had a near death experience at Christmas (with snow on the ground) but was fortunate to get to hospital quickly and he was made well. Here is where its necessary to be near a main road into the nearest town, at least within 25kms I would suggest. I have high blood pressure too. This alone, would not make me consider leaving - I had thought to die in our village just like the locals and be carried to my grave in the back of a lorry!
Another reason for considering leaving has to be burearcracy and corruption. I will go with the flow on these counts but after 8 years little seems to change and having had a brush with a case that needed the law, I am not as happy as I was. You see, its only when things actually happen to you that the cracks begin to show. Probably what happens in many cases.
The last reason sounds pathetic because it has been the stand-off with the British folk that have come over the last few years. Maybe its resentment because, naturally, we were alread insitu with the locals when they arrived although we never acted in an offensive way about this. There followed a series of incidents which I don't need to go into and would not impact on any new people arriving because they are probably very nice people to others (!!!) Its the thought of having family and friends nearby again has made me think about what I need at my age.
Put all of this together and I really feel its time to go home bearing in mind that the choices I made to stay abroad were largely financial as well as having a good time while making do.
I am still undecided and will most probably be staying the winter now which I don't mind. In fact, now I'm older, I find the winters preferable to the summer in some ways although both have much to offer. I don't believe the climate is really a reason for folks to give up on Bulgaria because they should have researched the weather patterns although mayber 40C and -25C don't mean much to them until experienced.
Then of course, there are those who bought purely for investment or holiday homes. The recession has impacted on everyone and the cost of flights and lack of tourism in the resorts also has a lot to do with property sales I would guess.
Altogether, Bulgaria is a difficult choice for relocation and the countryside, although beautiful , is not like Italy, Spain or the Greek Islands. Local bars are basic in most villages and few offer food. They do offer warmth, TV and (usually) hospitality especially to the locals who use the bars to save their bills.
Having said all this, I still think Bulgaria has a lot to offer and would still like to promote for the longterm. It is not good for investment at the moment - but where is unless you can wait another 10 years for your money? I will always have fond memories of my stay in Greece and Bulgaria but you have to know yourself really well before leaving the Old Country and have independent and understanding families. Popping back and forwards is the middle road, but can be unsettling too.
Hope all this helps.
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willowsend
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PostSubject: Re: Where did it go wrong?   Fri Oct 19, 2012 9:38 am

By golly oldun, what did you have for breakfast. that is a
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PostSubject: Re: Where did it go wrong?   Fri Oct 19, 2012 9:43 am

:LMHO:Haven't had internet for 3 days (well on and off) :Headbang:I also have a migraine so spending time on this great forum. Nice to see interesting posts to reply to. :Thank you:Willowsend
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PostSubject: Re: Where did it go wrong?   Sat Oct 20, 2012 2:55 pm

No more posts on the subject yet. It was my personal slant on things but I have to say, that in general, I really think that many Brits think they can make the country just like in Britain. They have little understanding of what life here is really like and have the rose tinted spectacles well and truly in place seeing the advantages of a slower pace of life, growing a few veggies, having animals and a much cheaper cost of living. They do not see the other side of this idyll. Unless you have capital, a pension or some means of making a living, many will fail after the two year honeymoon period when boredom can set in. No amount of internet research will prepare you for a permanent life in Bulgaria. When you see the most beautiful houses for sale on websites you have to wonder why people are giving up as the OP is asking and so do I. To spend so much money on renovating and then to sell at a loss must be gut wrenching. I fully believe there are 'home lovers' and 'adventurers'. If you are the first you will not be happy living abroad no matter how attractive it might seem when things are bad, raining and difficult in Britain.
Personally, I have very mixed feelings about leaving Bulgaria where we can both live a simple life in a beautiful village on one basic State Pension. However, we have tightened our belts a lot and do not do many things that we would like to. This will definitely also be true in Blighty so I sit in the garden and keep thinking waiting for something to happen to really and truly make me make a decision!!! Like a reasonable offer for our home maybe??? I will be very sad to leave so its not because I am fed up with Bulgaria and I do realise it will be difficult back in Britain. I just think the time has come. Maybe an 'age' thing because I am not as hardy as the old Bulgarian ladies in our village. I think my younger Hero should also have more of a life although he seems well suited to Bulgarian life. Its because we are both so adaptable rather than what we would actually like. A bit more realistic than some in spite of a large dose of romanticism!
I know some people on forums find answers pointing out difficulties, as negative, but really people are only trying to help. Its so easy to say everything is wonderful as I have probably done in the past. That was just ME and I now realise that I probably have lived a life 'out of the box'!
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