Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Вече не съм доброволка от корпус на мира (I am no longer a Peace Corps Volunteer)

I am a free agent. I can't believe it. In about an hour and a half yesterday, I was able to finish up all the paperwork that tied me to Peace Corps. I feel like a lost kitten. I'm back in my town - finishing up packing and basically avoiding the inevitable. Sometime over the next week, I'm going to have to leave. Again, I can't quite believe it. I feel so lost.
I'm in the internet cafe 'cause I no longer have internet in my home. I have been spoiled having internet at home. I can surf the net in peace and quiet - and in my pj's! Now I'm surrounded by a bunch of boys playing various video games and yelling the few curse words they know in English. I miss my internet.
I went and visited my host family over the weekend. Vili had work on Saturday, so I hid out in her room - watching movies and sleeping. That night we went out with an acquaintance of hers in Plovdiv. We got home at a reasonable time and then slept late into the next morning. My "mom" made my favorite meals for me, and we spent a lot of time hanging out. The next day, Vili spoiled me buy getting me a bunch of souvenirs from Plovdiv. I bought her a necklace. We went to eat. Then we had an almost-tearful good-bye at the bus station.
When I got home - late. Some of my colleagues were waiting for me. They fed me (I've been doing a lot of eating) and gave me gifts. Reneta was mad that I had shown up late. She thought that I had flaked on them. She perked up once I showed up. It's interesting to see how much Reneta has changed. When she was younger, she used to cry when I didn't show up when she thought I should. Now she gets angry. My colleagues were happy to hear that I wasn't ready to leave right away. I don't think they really want to deal with it either. Ani even offered to let me live with them for a month! What would I do, though? Until now, I've been living like a volunteer. Now what? I should live like a cat?
Closing my service (COS-ing) was easier than I expected. I had to fill out some documentation, see some people, and get some signatures. Considering how chaotic my life has been recently, I wasn't expecting it to go so smoothly. I guess I was better-prepared than I had expected. I thought I would have to spend the night in Sofia, but I was able to come home.
Today, I spent most of the day inside. I've gone "na-gosti" (visiting people) a few times. There are still people I need to spend time with. I still expect someone to see me accidentally and to call me out for saying that I was leaving on Monday. Mostly, this time is for me. With everyone wanting to see me, I couldn't pack and get my things in order. Now I'm able to do that. Only I'm still having a hard time 'cause people have felt the need to give me large, breakable gifts. I'm not complaining that people love me. I just can't figure out how to get these "symbols of their affection" home.
Meh. I'm in limbo. I don't know when I'm actually leaving, but it's going to have to be sometime soon. People who do know that I'm still here ask when I'm going, and I know it sucks to be telling them, "Maybe tomorrow... maybe the day after...." They can't get closure that way. I feel like a ghost walking around town. I have to get moving on.
In more entertaining news, I was offered a marriage deal yesterday. He said I could stay in Bulgaria and live in his nice apartment in Sofia while he goes to America and lives in California. I could even have lovers! This would fall in line pretty well with my goal to become a trophy wife. If only it weren't a joke, I'd have to give it some more thought....


Anonymous said...

Честито, Ейприл! Прекрасен български! Ако знаеше какъв батак (знаеш какво е "батак", нали) те очаква в милата американска родина, може би още една година в Ракитово не е толкова лоша идея. Ейтър уей, забвалявай се докато още си на 10 000 мили от доста неясното бъдеще. То те очаква с нетърпение, но без особен ентусиазъм!

Lyrpa said...

Thanks! Unfortunately, I don't know what "batak" is. As far as I'm concerned, it's a town next to Rakitovo.

Amanda said...

Trophy wife...now that's an idea!!

Anonymous said...

Батак ... I'm not sure where the idiom originates from, could be from the town of Batak and the prominent massacre indeed...but "batak" is often used to describe a large-scale mess, a FUBAR, something that can not be repaired. As you know, right now the US economy and and the job market in particular are following the financial system into the oblivion. A major economic downturn is imminent. It's a really tough time, and it's unfortunate that it coincides with your...COS. So best of luck to you, cutie!

Miro said...

Hi there. It's Miro.

I hope you enjoyed the diner last friday and in particular the 'mish-mash'. I was going to be the one who cooked it, but since I was in Velingrad untill 7pm, I was not able to(damn this "space-time continuum"). Well since my mother made it on my behalf, I'm still gona claim all the credit.
I'm glad that your saga finaly had a hapy ending.
I want to share My Little Saga of the Calendars we Wanted to Give to That Chick That's Going Back to the States, in short to be refered as M.L.S.C.W.G.T.C.T.G.B.S.(that's as short as it gets)
If you don't like it, you have no taste. (:-P)
The story goes as follows:

Once upon a time, in the misty mystic hills of the Rodopa mountain, the home of the mythic hero Orpheus, who descended into the uderworld to rescue his beloved Euridice, and was told not to turn back or he will lose her forever, and he turned back, and he lost her forever, so in this mountine some 6 to 8 thousand years ago there lived a tribe called Besi. They were famous throuhout the ancient world with their wine and their beer(bira besica). And by the way - with their old and advanced civilization. Few thousant years of progress and develpoment later and these people created a realy elaborate and advanced bureaucracy that was very effective in turning the possible into imposible. Well that's enough for them let's go back to the M.L.S.C.W.G.T.C.T.G.B.S. So somewhere around 20th-21st century in these ancient lands a fellowship was formed by some of the last descendents of the Besi. We will call them The Super Cool and Weird Besi Guys From the Fellowship of Syutka or T.S.C.W.B.G.F.F.S. or the Syutka guys, or the super cool guys. When they get together they will usualy go on a trip to some ancient ruins and they will talk a lot about history and other bulls**t, and they will retrace the ancient myths and mystries of the Besi and Orpheus, but most often they will just climb the Syutka peak and honor Dionysus by getting drunk. And they honored Dionysus on any occasion but they never honored Fortuna(the fate) and she was getting mad at them, especially when someone blamed her for his own faults. One day she got totaly pissed off, when one of her best followers blaimed on her that he can't go to the concert of Metalica in Sofia, because he must stay home and study for the stupid Microsoft certificate. What a hypocrite. I mean- this guy don't even like Metalica in live. You know it's realy annoing when James Hatfield starts to make all this improvisations, totaly ruining the energy of the original song. Good think I am not that guy....Well Ok, I am that guy. Whatever! So, he pissed her of and she started yelling: "That's it.I've had enough of all of you. You want ancient myths and mysterys, I'l give you a pretty good taste of the mythos.I will bring to you your own Euridice, and she will be with you just for three months, and you will never see her again." And the poor guys from T.S.C.W.B.G.F.F.S. had no eye deer, I mean no idea, what lies ahed of them. Then Fortuna brought her secret weapon - a girl from across the ocean. At first glance she looked like any average american hot chick, but she had superpowers, and I suspect that she is an alien from Venus. She was brought here three years before the time of her mission, so that she can learn the language, get used to the local culture and practice her magic among the not so cool chumps. The time wnet on, and three months before her mandate in the peace corps expires, she finaly met them and cast on them her best spell - 15th level "heart-breaking soul steal". I remember the day I first saw her. I can't forget it anyway because it was my birthday. I, as fellow member of the fellowship, was takeing part in an operation of eradication of any forms of invasive plant life that were threatening the integrety of the ruins of a 5th century early-christian church. In other words we were removeing plants to clear some old stones. I was talking with Mladen abouth egyptian pyramids and football(soccer) games, and then she came. And as I saw her I told myself:"wooooo, who's that chick? O boy, do I wana get in her pants or what?"well, I alweys think that when I see a pretty girl. And then I asked myself : "Or maybe I wana drink some beer insted". Unfortunatly I had no mony on myself so I had to drink rakia insted. Did I said "unfortunatly"? Whatever. And then I learned her name- Apryl. Apryl from America! Wow! I immediately dumped all of my anti-american sentiment. Well allmost all of it, I still have some reserves at home, but I have tough time finding them. By the way, Americans, congratulations on your brand new president.
Now let's go back to the story of M.L.S.C.W.G.T.C.T.G.B.S.
In a short while everyone was under her spell, and I started to have these funny observations- whenever I am talking to anyone of the Syutka guys sooner or later the name Apryl is mentioned, and when that happens she becames the main subject of the conversation. That was especialy thrue when I was talking to Svilen or Mladen or even occasionally happend with Kolyo. I suspect that Kolyo is a robot sent from the future, but this is another story. I even made some funny litle experiments, like when I am talking to Svilen or Mladen, I would not mention anything related to Apryl, and I will just listen how much time will it take before they bring up the subject. And it always worked. She had made her way into everybody's hearts and when she leave she will leave behind a mountain of broken hearts and rivers of tears. Wow that sounds realy dramatic. I knew I had to do something, but what? Only if I had at least one-eye deer, I mean one idea. Emily don't like much the joke abouth the "no F. eye deer". May be that's the solution, I'll bore her to death with jokes, and the peace corps will bring Apryl back. So Emily, if you are reading this, you should be warned - I am deadly serious when I am jokeing. :-E
Things started to get out of control, some guys were getting desperate and were even ready to make the ultimate sacrifice - TO GET MARRIED! OMFG!!! I have to do something, and fast, but what? And then I made the right decision - I should buy myself 2 gallons of beer insted of one. But apart from that I allso had to do something about Apryl. And then Svilen gave me that idea that we should make calendars of our organisation for the 2009. And in that moment I had that revelation: "That's it. That will solve all our problems. That and two gallons of beer!" And that may allso help us with the curse from Fortuna. We had just a week to do this and it's a work for about a week wich means that it will take us atleast a month to get it done. So it's practically imposible to do it on schedule. And if I made it in schedule than I would have overcame all of the obstacles that Fortuna throws at me and I'll put her in her place, wich is in the kitchen.
And here begins(it was about f***ing time!) My Little Saga of the Calendars we Wanted to Give to That Chick That's Going Back to the States, as we allready agreed to refer as M.L.S.C.W.G.T.C.T.G.B.S.
It all started when we was on the hike to Musala peak - the highest on the balkan peninsula. We started from Borovets wich is some 12 kilometres from the peak, and some 1300 metres below. There were just 4 of us - the toughest ones - me, Svilen, Kolyo and Petrov(I don't know his firs name).We were lucky that there was very dense fog so that we couldn't see what lies ahed, or we could have given up straightaway, and missed this exceptional experience. We started from the 'finnish vilage' where we couldn't find enybody who speakes bulgarian or english, to ask for directions, so we started climbig straight through the ski runway. And it is for here that I am glad that there was fog. On our way back when we saw what we had climbed, we were shocked. Kolyo, who was our guide, has been skiing here for years, but sliding downward from top to bottom in two minutes, may give you a wrong idea of the real lenght and slope. Apart from haveing a graet time and enjoing that awesome and exremеly challenging climb, I was allso conducting my experiment - "let's see how long will it take before someone starts talking about Apryl" to be reffered as L.S.H.L.W.T.B.S.S.T.A.A. At first there were not much results. There were just few sentences like : "Wow, that's realy tough route, it's good that we didn't invited Apryl, or we should had have to carry her"
The guy from the rescue service had told us that that route will take about 7 hours, and we made it in 4 hours. And that was part of the plan because we were planning to make the whole trip in one day.In that way hat we don't have to pay for hotel, and we could make it as cheap as it gets. We went from Rakitovo in 7am and we were back in Rakitovao in 7pm. When we got back to the car my experiment finaly had some results. Svilen told me that they(Svilen, Rumen and I don't know who else) had this idea for some time(months) that we should make Calendars for our society and that it will be good if we can make them before Apryl leaves so that we could give her some of them, so that she could give them to her frends in the states. They know a guy that have a printig-house but still there must be someone to actualy make the calendar before we gave it for printing. After all we want to make it as cheap as possible, so it was me who had to do the work. That was in sunday, and Svilen told me that we will see each other in mondeay and discuss everithing, and start doing the thing. And he realy called me in tuesday to say that we will meet in wednesday(why hurry, there's plenty of time). He told me that there must be 12 pictures from our region, one for each month, so we will need pictures from all the four seasons. Well, so far so good, but there was a little problem. While I was studying in the universety, I was not liveing in Rakitovo and I only have pictures from the summer and autumn. Now what shoud I do? A remembered that I know one american girl that says that she has thousands of pictures from our region, and since she have more than me, than she have more than evrybody in the felowship. So I called her and found out that she was haveing a lunch in another part of the town, and Svilen was in a hury so I asked her if we could meet her the next day, and she told me that she will call. Insted of calling me, she send me an email wich I didn't check up untill sunday, and by then the things had changed, and the needs of the day were different. After our meeting at wensday I started working on the Calendar. But then - surprise - after the last time I have reinstalled my Windows, I've not installed CorelDrow or Photoshop or anything like it. And I don't have it at my place. And I allso don't have internet at my place. So I had to go to my parrent's place, and I couldn't find any CorelDrow on disk there so I had to download one from a torrent tracker. This took about half a day, and while it was being downloaded, I went to by myself a "USB mass storage device" so that I can take the CorelDrow to my place(I accidentaly destroyed my previous flash drive). Then I recived call from Svilen, and I thought "great atlast we can discuss some details"- pretty optimistic thought. We had to meet in a cafe, and when I went there I met Dancho, known also as Johnny(he calls everybody Johnny, and everybody call him Johnny) We had a beer(Ok, I had a beer, he had a coffee), and talked about various subjects like Musala peak, calendars, Apryl and so on. Finaly Svilen and Rumen showed up and I was realy coming to the idea, that we may actually get something done today. This impression was short-lived. When Svilen and Rumen came, the only thing they talked was, when will Rumen(the busyest guy in the universe) have free time, so that we can get together, to discuss what will we do. What the hell? Aren't we together now? Why not get strait to the subject? So the two very busy guys wasted some time without helping me to do what they wanted me to do for them. They agreed that monday will be suitable for us to meet, in order to do what we can do right now. And until then what? I told Svilen that in the mean-time I will do whatever I can with what I have, but I realy need to discuss some details and we can go to my place at my computer and do exactly that, insted of sitting in the cafe. He told me that he have to go, and that we will meet each other some of these days.(why hurry? There's plenty of time) Then I went back to my parrent's house. The CorelDraw was downloaded allready, and I brought it to my place only to find out that I dodn't have the CD-key. That's great. Again - going to my parrent's house, takeing some code, bringing it back to my place and finding out that it doesn't work. That's even greater! The same exercise again, and finaly success! A working CorelDraw 12. It was allready time for diner so yet again I went to my parrent's house. But before that I get atleast one think done - I bougth myself a gallon of beer. When got there I had some diner, wached TV drinking beer with my dad, commenting the news and ridiculeing stupid movies. I like to do that a lot, so if you like hollywood movies, you don't want to wach them with me. When I came back to my place I thought that since I finaly have operational CorelDraw, I've done enough work for today, and I can just drink beer, listen to "Godsmack" and play "Shogun - Total War" or "Star Craft - Brood War". And so thursday's gone and friday is on the way. Well friday came and I strted(at last) working on the calendar, not knowing what realy they wanted me to do of it. I only knew that there's gona be 12 months and 12 pictures, so I assumed that there's gona be 12 pages, each with a month and one big picture from that time of the year. I didn't have pictures from all seasons, so I meant to do few conceptual designs, so that we could select the pictures when we have them, and put it all together. I only made one design, and I'm glad I didn't made more, because it would have been wasted effort. I'm glad that I managed to do other work that day, like choping wood, digging up and replanting some plants in the garden that needed to be moved, and other stuff. The day was not total waste, I had some beers at the evening. Arrgh .. THAT'S GREAT! I just run out of beer while tapeing this. :(
Anyway the more interesting thing happened the next day. At saturday my brother came to town, and as usualy he didn't took a lot of time to annoy the hell out of me. And if that's not enough he started whineing on me about his girlfrend. Man do you realy think I want to hear all this. Good for him that he has a place to dump all of his negative emotions, and good for me that I am only pretending to be paying attention. I like him better when he is acting as an ass, than when he is whineing. Atleast, when he is an asshole, I can totaly ignore him, and I can be an asshole myself without feeling guilty about it. Whatever. What happened is that Svilen called me and he told me, that he and Lilia want to come to my place to see what I have made, and say what we are going to be doing. At last. We are going to talk realy about what we are doing and what we want to get done. And they came, they saw, they told me that what we are going to do is one page-calendar, therefor what I have made(good that it wasn't much) was useless. Good work, but why not start all over again. There's plenty of time. Great timeing Svilen! Atleast you told me this before I have made full 12 pages. So back at the beginning. And my brother continued to bother me with stuff that I am not interested in hearing, so I decided that the best thing to do is to chop some more wood, or to go watch TV with my dad, or do anything to distract myself. At sunday me and my brother went on a hike. At the morning he was in nasty mood, but I realy made it clear that I'm not takeing any of this s**t, and it worked great. Being rude can sometimes make wonders. We made pretty long hike and even talked about subjects not related to his girlfrend. We had lunch, and after that we did a bit of wrestling. He trains judo and sambo, and I am more of a free-style wrestler. Lately I am in a great physical condition, and at the beginning I made five take-downs in a row. But after all he weighs 15kg(30lb) more than me, and as I got tired, the fight got even, and at the end he took me down three times in a row. After that we made long and intensive fight with pine cones. We had good time and get back home at 7pm. Then I started working on the calendar again. I had some pretty good ideas, but there were no room for everything that I wanted to put in. Svilen told me that it is going to be 35/50sm so there can't be 12 pictures, so I don't need pictures from all seasons. On monday I woke up early and continued working. By 11am it was allmost ready and I went to see Svilen and Rumen and to show them the reasult. Rumen(the busyest guy in the universe) was complaining for 15 minutes that he has no time, and the work that we had to do took just for 5 minutes. And the result was : "It's pretty good but that size realy dont allow enough stuff to be put in. We better make it in 50/70sm". So once again - Good work, but start all over again. And that's not all. Svilen told me that Apryl is leaving the next monday, so we have to have the calendars printed by the end of the week. Wich means that I have to finish it somwere around wednesday and to bring it to the printing house in Velingrad. And that's still not all. Svilen wants us to make some kind of farewell party for Apryl. I said that we may make it at my place, but he have to do the organization and I will take care of the calendar. When I came back home I decided that I need devine help to get it done on time, so I decided to honor Dionysus by drinking beer and listening to Rammstein. And he realy helped me, when I was playing StarCraft that evening. I was playing protoss and I won agains 1 terran and 1 zerg in an open ground battle, and I defeated em in the early game with zealot rush.
So tuesday came, one week has passed, and I am back at square one. I have three days left and I have more things to do, because now I can put more stuff on the calendar. I had that idea to put a panoramic picture, and some decorative stylise figures like Orpheus and dionysus. But I am yet to make them, and there's a lot more work to do. Svilen told me that Apryl is in Rakitovo until friday so we will meet again in wednesday, for one final look at the design, and off we go to the printing house. Pretty optimistic. So it was tuesday and I have to finish it by wednesday before lunch. No problem, there's plenty of time, so I'll just take the day off. I did all the work there is in the garden, and chpoed all of the wood there was, and I went to play basketball. That reminds me of another story. When I bought my basketball from Pazardzhik few weeks ago, I had pretty much the same experience that you, Apryl, described with the bus that don't go to the bus-stop. I was carrying a lot of bags(I bought myself a lot of stuff that day), throughout Pazardzhik, and some of them were pretty large like the basketball, some were pretty heavy, like some dumb-bells and some ankle-weights, others were breakable. It was pretty hot day. I went to the bus-stop and waited for about half an hour. There were one old guy and one roma woman waiting, and the old guy said that the previous bus has allso not passed. So me and the roma woman decided to go to the train/bus station. After one long walk in the heat with all the bags that I was carrying, we were finaly there, and what a luck, the bus from Plovdiv to Velingrad was there and it was about to go. Well that's too good to be true, and then suddenly - "sorry there's only room for one" - and the woman got it(being gentleman sometimes sucks). Now I have entire hour until my bus is here so I went to the coffeeshop to kill some time. When I was finishing my third beer, two gorgeous babes entered the coffee and seated at the table next to mine."Wooooo, who are these chicks?" I wanted to talk to them but I forgot how to breath when one smiled at me. "O boy, do I wona spank em real bad?"They will probably never read this so I'm not writeing any excuses here. Whatever, the funny thing is that the bus that I boarded, actualy went to the bus-stop, and the old guy that stayed there, got on it.Now let's get back to M.L.S.C.W.G.T.C.T.G.B.S.
I was still not too happy about the G.W.D.I.A.(Good work, do it again) thing, so I treated myself with some Godsmack-therapy and some YouTube-therapy. Jon Lajoie, you rock! Bad thing, I forgot to by myself some beer for the evening, and it became even worse because I was fighting against protoss and terran. Man, they realy kicked my ass.
So "tuesday's gone" and wednesday's on. I woke early and started working, with the optimistic idea that I will get it allmost done by lunch, then we will meet and see what we have and what we want, and hopefuly I'll finish it by the end of the day. And tomorow we'll get it printed. And I realy get it "allmost" ready, but not before 7pm. Then Svilen called me and told me that, what we have planned was not going to happen. What a surprise, he calls me at 7pm to tell me that the meeting, that was to be 8 hours ago, will not happen. That was realy informative, thanks. Infact Svilen, Rumen and Mladen have met and discussed some stuff like how much will it cost, can we find the money, and do we have to pay in advance. We can still have it done tomorrow, have one last look at it, and bring it to the printing house. There's plenty of time. "One last look"? Maybe you mean "one first look". After all I've started it from scrach and no one has yet seen it. I don't want to hear another G.W.D.I.A.(Good work, do it again). I realy need someone to have one first look before we all have that last look at it. Svilen said that he may meet me before lunch, and I told him that he better do. So thursday came, I had done alot of work yestarday and it looked allmost ready, but what I had yet to do was neither easy nor quik. I made the panoramic picture last day, but I had yet to make the Orpheus and the Dionysus,and some other time-consumming stuff. I took my time with the Orpheus and I did pretty god job of it, and it was allmost lunch. Svilen didn't show up, but Rumen came. And can you gess it - there were no G.W.D.I.A. today. Thank goodnes, and thank evilness and thank everything that could be thanked! If he had given me another G.W.D.I.A., I shoud had have to kill him. Atlast we could finaly discuss some details that I need to know. We put some text under the pictures and I can finaly get it finished. I knew that these last things will take their time, and they did. Svilen called me twice to ask me if I am ready, and to tell me that if I finish it by 3 or 4pm, I should call Rumen and we shall be on our way to Velingrad. I finished it by 3:30 and called Rumen, and foud out that "Stefan is busy so he can't give us a ride, before 5, and the printing house works untill 5, so we can't do it today" And why do it today, there's plenty of time, right? I said "In that case we'll find some other way(what's the big deal)". I called Dancho(Johnny), he's busy, can't geve us a ride. So what? I don't need a ride, there's bus to Velingrad in every hour, and I don't need Rumen, I just need the phone of the Printing guy. Then Rumen called me and said that Stefan is here, they are comming to pick me up, and off we go. Well one less thing to wory about.
So we went to the printing house and Rumen started talking to the printing guy(Georgi).
R."Hi there Joro, Remember when we talked that our group wants to make some calendars?"
G."Yea, but that was months ago and you have given me nothing to work with"
R."Well, the thing is - we need them printed by tomorrow afternoon."
Georgi looked at him startled like he was thinking "Am I hearig right? Are these guys nuts, or is it my imagination?" "Well, we have it ready already" I said, pulling the flash drive out of my pocket. Rumen and Georgi stayed there and talked, and I went upstairs to the design team, to give it to em. And also to give them the flash drive with the calendar. When I entered their room I was plesantly surprised. The design team consisted of one very nice lady, and one reasonably hot chick. "Wow, do I wana do something to her?" We had some pretty nice chat while we were waithing for the first sample to be printed. The printing machine took quite a time to load all the data from the file. The CorelDrow file was 206MB. I had allso converted it into a bitmap, but it also was over 140MB. Georgi said that he doesn't have proper paper to make the calendars in 50/70sm and won't have it in at least two weeks. So we decided that he will print us 10 calendars in smaller size for tomorrow and we don't need to pay them yet. Well, mission accomplished! Let's go home because it's beer-time already.
Friday morning. I woke up and suddenly realised - "Is this possible? I don't have anything urgent for today. I realy did it! In your face, Fotuna!!!". I only have to clean the house, and to help my mom with the food. But the diner is scheduled for 7pm so there's plenty of time. I'll go play some basketball first. I also may wana make sure that someone actually goes to pick up the calendars. At 1pm I called Svilen and he told me that no one has yet gone to take them, but Mladen is going to Velingrad at 3pm an I should call him and go with him. I helped my mom, prepearing the place, and she gave me a list of a ton of things to buy, but then Mladen came and I told her "I'm going to Velingrad now, but I'll be right back to help you out." We went to a sport store first because I wanted to buy some dumb-bells. I had no money on myself, but I had my debit card. There were a lot of great stuff in that store. I told the saleschick that I am just looking at the stuff, and I'll come back later, after I hit the cash-machine. Mladen was here with the mission to buy a present for Apryl. After that we went to a souvenir store. Mladen asked the saleswoman if she could help us out. We are searching for a gift to a person that's leaving Bulgaria, so it must be something traditionaly bulgarian, to remid her of this place. They were not very rich on traditional stuff. She could only point out a replica of "chereshovo topche" - a wooden cannon from the April Upriseing against the ottomans in 1876. I said "No way, that won't do. They will arest her for trying to take over the plane with this cannon."The hijackers at 9/11 used plastic knifes, and a wooden cannon is much more sophisticated weapon system. It has much grater firepower - if you bang someone on the head with this cannon you will do more damage, than if you stab him with a plastic knife. Well of course if you are strong enough to lift the cannon, you can simply punch the guy and knock him out. So Apryl, you think that we've given you a huge present? You should see what it could have been. The lady directed us to another souvenir store, but before we go there we headed for the printing house.
As soon as the printing house was in sight, I realised that my hopes, of everithing going flawless, were vain. There were a bunch of workers, who had dug the pavement right in front of the printing house, and had pulled out some giant cables. Oh gosh, just don't tell me that tehre were no power, and the calendars are not yet printed. We met Georgi, and he told us exactly that. So Fortuna, not giving up yet? I'm not giving up either. These guys had came and just cut the power off, with no warning. And it looks like they have a hell lot of work to do. So what do we do now? I started thinking about some plan 'B'- some way to give the damn things to Apryl even if they are not ready today.
I asked Georgi : "When can they be ready?"
he said "I'll start printing them rigth away, as soon as the power is back on."
"But when may that be?"
he said - "I have no eye deer(well he didn't said that ;-)) I have no idea. It looks like the chumps outside have a lot of work to do. As soon as they are ready I'll start printig."
"And can that happen today?"
"Well, I'll wait for them to finish, and as soon as the power is back on, I'll start printing."
"Yea, but can it be done TODAY?" Persistent, am I not?
"Well, I'll stay and wait after 5pm if necessary, and I'll give you a call."
I asked one of the chumps, if they can be ready by 5.
"Not likely." he said.
"Well, you bettr do it. We also have work to do."
After that we went to the other souvenir store and there were more of a choice. We were haveing a tough time choosing what to buy. We got out of the store and Mladen told me that our budget for this thing is 50 bgn(leva) and with them we must also buy some alcohol, prefferebly rakia and good one. So we went first to a liquor store, bought a bottle of verry good rakia(Slivenska perla), and get back to the souvenir store. There was a very nice trojan ceramic rakia set. The price tag was 10 bgn But we were not shure if it was for the entire set or just for one pice. When the saleswoman came back she told us that it was the entire set."In that case, I think we can't afford, not to buy it" I said. We choosed some other stuff and she started packing them. She asked if she is to remove the price tags. I said "Shure you do that. And then add new tags with higher price. After all we are not scrape-pennys". The total cost of the pesents and the rakia was 54 bucks and Mladen only had 50 on him, so we both had to go and hit the cash machine. We left the presents and the rakia in the store and headed to the nearest bank. I aproached the cahsh-machine only to find out that it was not operational. Mladen asked me what happend. "It's out of order, so I'll go to the another one". He said "Out of order? Really? I'll go check it out" as if that was something extraordinary. I crossed the street. There are three more banks there, and I choosed the most distant one(I won't let the space-time continuum stand in the way of my free choice). In a short while Mladen came to me and said "Gess who I just met?" It turned out that Apryl was in the bank to wich we first went, and while he, for some weird reason, was stareing at the cash machine, she saw him through the window, and went out to say hi. Now that was completely unexpected. It is a weird day today. He said that after we did our job at the store, and she did hers at the bank, we may all go for a coffee while waithing for the calendars to be raedy. It sounds great, but somehow too optimistic.
We get back to the store and bought the presents. I also both mysefl a very cool knife. I thought that it was just decorative but after few days, when I was examinig it closely, found out that it was from stainless steel, and it was very good for opening beer bottles. Then I tested it's sharpness by trying to cut myself on the hand, but nothing happened. The next day however, I foud that I have a cut on my hand. Wow that's like in these samurai movies, when the samurai slashes through some guy, and his head fell off several secconds later. Since my wound appeared a whole day later, than this must be the sharpes knife ever. whatever, let's go back to M.L.S.C.W.G.T.C.T.G.B.S.(I know, it's not fun any more, but I have to put something to make the story longer)
So we bought the presents, then I bought myself the dumb-bells, Mladen bought some "kebapcheta", and we went again to the printing house. It was about 5 and, as expected, the chumps were not yet done. We asked the CC(chump in charge) how long will it take to finish it. He said probably an hour. Then Mladen looked at me with the look of defeatism. His expression was saying "I gess we did all we can taday. That's all folks" And his muth wa saying basicli the same thing : "we better go meet Apryl and go to Rakitovo together, because the last bus will be going shortly". I told him that if he is in a hurry, he may go, but I am not going back empty handed. So he went. I made shure taht the chumps are aware, that I'm staying and waiting them do their work, so that I can do mine. Georgi assured me that he will be waiting as well. The CC said that they have a work for about an hour, wich means that It will be atleast an hour and a half. The only thing I have to do now, is to buy myself a newspaper, and a redeploy myself into a coffee-shop. It was not easy finding newspaper after 5pm, but I found one newsstand at the bazaar. Then Mladen called me and said that he and Apryl are at the bus station, and I may go there and have a coffee with them, while they wait for the bus. That sounds good(too good). I went there and allmost immediately their transportation arrived. So Fortuna, playing games on me again? I figured it all out. That explanes everything. Fortuna made Mladen act so weird about the cash machine, so that we may meet Apryl, and I may want to go back with them. Nice try Fortuna-baby, but I am here with a mission, and I'm not going back empty-handed. You have to do better than this, if you don't want to spend the rest of the eternity in the kitchen.
I wandered for a while, and found a nice, and allmost empty cafe. I first thought that I will have a beer, but I changed my mind, and decided to have two beers. After all the beer usualy solves all problems. As sir Winston Churchill once said : "we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall drink beer and we shall never surrender". Well maybe he didn't said the thing about the beer, but I'm damn shure he meant it. Then the waitress came "WOW! Check out this chick". I think I may start comeing to this pub more often. She told me her name, but I was not listening, because my atention was focused in the visual perception. After a short chat, I paid some atention to my newspaper - "Strogo Sekretno" or Top Secret(literal translation), or Bulgaria Confidential(officia english title). If you are into Geopolitics, weaponology and conspiracy theorys, you'll love this paper. My mother called twice to ask when I'll be back to help her, because she has a hell lot of work to do. I told her to take care of the stuff, and I'll be back when I'm back. In the next hour and a half I was reading about some new russian submarine, the american economy and a new analysis of the russo-georgian conflict, and I was also drinking beer and takeing temperature readings with my F.C.S.W.L.P.J. Gess what this is. Well you can,t gess it so I'll tell you. Its's full name is F.C.S.W.L.P.J.T.O.G.T.A.C. and it stands for : F**king Chinese StopWatch-Like Piece of Junk That's Only Good for Thermometer and an Alarm Clock. It used to be a stopwatch but after two training sessions, it was missing three buttons, and now I can only use it for termometer and an alarm clock, but the alarm is set for 6am and can't be readjusted. It's said to be impact-resistant, and I intend to find out, how much impact can it realy whithstand. When I finished my third beer, it was allmost 6:30, so I headed for the printing house again. When I got there, Georgi told me that the power has just been restored, and the calendars are on their way. The firs good news for the day. In your face, Fortuna! We had some good chat while waithing. He has, on the walls of his office, some of the more interesting things he has printed so far, and one in particular was realy cool. It was a quotation from Konstantin Jireček, from 1881 :
"…Ние, можещите, водени от незнаещите, вършим невъзможното за кефа на неблагодарните. И сме направили толкова много, с толкова малко, за толкова дълго време, че сме се квалифицирали да правим всичко от нищо.За мен най-лошото в България, е чудесното наслаждение, което имат тук хората да се преследват един друг и да развалят един другиму работата.“
After the damn things were ready, Georgi even gave me a ride home. A was there exactly at 7pm. There were no guests yet so I went to the store to buy some more food. The guests started to arive and they were also bringing rakia. When they were all here, we was about 15, so my mom started panicing that the food won't be enough. So I went again to the store to buy some more "kyufteta", but there were no more of them. I bought them all the last time, so now I bought some hell lot of "Kebapcheta". The diner was delicious, especialy the "mish-mash". I've made it great, and I wasn't even here. It did't take long before the conversation went into history, and Viktor was telling some theory, that I couldn't help but contradict(O boy, do I like to argue). If I have to describe Viktor in two words, it will be : stubbornness incarnate. I first made few probe strikes in his teritory, and his reaction was allout charge. He throw at me every fact that he may think of, at the moment. I made a tactical retreat, giveing up ground on condition, with the manoeuvre "Let's suppose it's true, but then...", opening new questions, streaching out his supply-lines and never giveing him final victory. His charge was runing out of steam and he throw few last desperate attacks, wich I easely deflected with the technic "that's true but not relevant". Then I started my counter-offensive with a flanking manoeuvre, threatening the basis of his assault - the author and the theory itself rather the individual facts. I didn't try direct assult to discredit the author himsef, but I made encirclement manoeuvre, by widenig the battleground and puting him in a context of beeing just one of many authors with many theorys, and compareing him with another author(who I support), with better credentials, and contradicting theory. So I had his HQ surrounded, and I was in a position to attack the method of his author, wich was etymology. From all the history books I have read, I can say for shure, that with etymology, you can prove anything. At that point we declared a cease-fire. I didn' beated him into submission, but we signed the peace treaty on my terms. I stood against Viktor, and I emerged Victor. I didn't even unleashed my own allout charge. I allso could have thrown a lot of facts on him. Mladen wanted to close the subject so he said : "Anyway, the history is true.". I corected him :"The history is anything, but true."PWND
Everybody seamed to be haveing a good tome exept may be some members of the american delegation. Their facial expressions at times were like saying "I can't understand a thing but I'm laughing anyway" Apryl got her presents. I bet she had no eye deer..(i know, not fun any more) I mean no idea what was Mladen carying in the bag when they traveled together in the bus.
Before I know it, it was 11pm, Apryl decidet that it's time to go home, and suddenly, everybody decidetd to do the same.
On the next morning I found out that there was a hell lot of food left, and three bottles of rakia allmost full, and 13 bottles of beer. And I have to take care of all this! :-O I must have been I very good boy in previous live! So I defeated Fortuna, and as areward I got all this food. I was right, her place realy is in the kitchen. Viva Dionysus !!!
That's my first attempt at writeing so you can criticize as much as you like, I don't give to much of a f**k. ;-)

Lyrpa said...

Oh, Miro. You're nuts. You should start your own blog.

Miro said...

Thanks you are flatering me.