We touched down in Sofia at around 01:00 am and had to get a taksi to the bus station. Lots of fumbling linguistics and the pre-empted note from our Bulgarian partner, Teodora, managed to land us at the bus station.
Our bus to Stara Zagora departed at 07:00 am, so we had a little wait. The wait was fortuitous in the sense that we met our new friend, Graham, during the wait. Graham had come from Bristol to his house in Bulgaria to acquire passports for his cats to come back to Bristol with him. He was waiting for an 11:00 am bus and after chatting with him for a while he decided to get on the same coach as us.
After a long coach journey through the beautiful mountainous Bulgarian country side, we arrived in Stara Zagora and were greeted by our new Bulgarian partners and friends, Teodora, Moses and Mirho.
Once we’d checked out our new apartment, and dropped off our luggage at our new home for the next year, our friends took us to see the city and get some food.
We wandered to the central park.
Simon and I perched in a big old tree to chow down in the shade whilst the sun blared and children played.
Once our tummies were happy we strolled over to the office building of the ACAC – Different Vision organisation. We were introduced to the space and the people and the office space in which we will personally be working.
As we headed back towards our apartment we stopped in a haberdashery shop to purchase pillows, which have taken the names of our buddies back home. My pillow is called James, Jimi for short.
By now, the time was about 01:00 pm and we still hadn’t slept, so we returned to our apartment for some vital rest.
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Moses came to wake us up at around 06:00 pm and took us to get some more food. This time we had huge sandwiches from his favourite fast food place. I had the triple chicken. Delicious and far more nutritious than British fast food!
Afterwards, we moved to the office space to talk through technicalities, our duties, the history and culture of the area, our plans for the coming weeks and more still!
Once we were all clear, we were introduced to the derelict building which ACAC are planning to renovate into a boarding art centre!
The building is incredible architecturally but they definitely need some elbow grease.
So much more to come.