Tonight we are in Sofia. We woke up in Plovdiv, had our breakfast and walked around Old Town. There are so many partially uncovered Greek treasures in Old Town – we went by this house where they were digging up a huge garden tomb looking thing. It was crazy – they are still finding stuff. Wes says that since Bulgaria has entered the EU recently things are getting better economically for them and they probably finally have the money to dig and uncover all the hidden Thracian and Greek buildings.
Oh and I finally saw a gypsy kid today – he was going through the garbages in the center of Plovdiv. His hands were dirty and grimy and I felt really bad for him. I can’t believe I ever wanted to be a gypsy for Halloween. They’re lifestyle is nothing glamorous at all.
Anyway, so after that we got in the car (which I swore I would never get in again) and drove to Sofia. Sofia is like every other big city I’ve ever been to: lots of people, lots of noise, big buildings, shops on the streets, etc. I love it because I love cities. There are more people here who speak English than in Plovdiv. Every now and then you’ll see a random sign like “BBQ Place” and it surprises you because you’ve been used to seeing symbols for words on everything else. We finally found parking right by our hostel, got out only to find a sign on the door that said “Mostel hostel has moved” – great so Wes and I grabbed a couple bags and walked what was supposed to be a 5 min walk but ended up being a 20 minute walk because we got turned around. Directions are not our strong suit I think. But it’s ok because it’s a really cool city. So we got to the new hostel only to find out that because we checked in later than they thought we would, they gave away our room!! But they saved a private double back at a place near the old hostel. So we walked all the way bag. We’re staying there tonight and come back to the new place for the next two nights. Not super fun. But what can you do? Wes dropped me off at the “new place” where they served free spaghetti and beer while he is taking our rental car back.
I made a new discovery today: everyone here eats pizza with ketchup and mayonnaise on it! Seriously, I could not believe it. I scanned all the tables JUST to make sure I wasn’t exaggerating by thinking this, and I’m not. No matter what kind of pizza they were eating, everyone had put strips of mayo and ketchup on top. So weird. I could not stop staring. Wes had this really good chicken gyro looking thing with fries in it. I loved that too. The spaghetti I had tonight was ok. But it was free which makes it really ok. Oh and the breakfast they served us in Plovdiv was turkey, cucumbers, scrambled eggs, olives, a roll and juice. The juice here is really good – really thick and fruity.
We’ve been shopping a lot of places and I think I can fairly make the assessment that if you’re not a size small, you can’t really buy anything at the malls here. They have a whole rack of different shirts, but there is only one of each and most of the time it is a size small. It makes me miss US where I feel thin because I’m four sizes smaller than the biggest size. 🙂 Oh I also wanted to mention that the older generation is really really conservative. They dress in dresses and these jacket things and sometimes scarves. They are basically covered from head to toe, but the younger generation apparenty is trying to break free from that boring modesty by dressing in the shortest skirts, tightest pants and smallest shirts you’ve ever seen. It’s a really weird contrast to see an older Babba and her daughter walking together.