Things have been quiet around here of late on account of my world travels and altered domestic circumstances (about which more later, perhaps). In any case, I have returned from my journey to the Balkans, where I passed an enjoyable few days in Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, and surrounding area. Sofia is in many ways a beautiful city, and I wandered her streets happily. She is home to an impressive number of beautiful churches and monumental civic buildings. There are signs, none too subtle, of economic difficulties, and I am told that the country wages an exhausting battle against corruption and organized crime. I don’t doubt that is true, but I can say that the city was a good host to this visitor.
I regret that I did not have much occasion to sample the local cuisine. This is entirely my own fault. I have the perverse habit of craving Chinese food when I travel; there is precious little of it available in Bulgaria, as far as I can tell, and even less Vietnamese or Thai, but my wandering eye wandered nonetheless. I can say this: Bulgarians make excellent pizza.
The language barrier was not too much of an issue, as I managed to make myself understood, more or less, when necessary. The nodding/shaking problem did not really arise. I grappled manfully with the Cyrillic script, and emerged chastened but satisfied with my performance.
Anyone interested in seeing a few photos, complete with explanatory captions, can look here.