Issue 15-16


"Whatever happened to the 'Golden Guys'?" This was the question we were all asking ourselves when the Bulgarian national team was knocked out in the qualifying rounds of the 2004 European Championship in Portugal. The memory of the Golden Guys' fourth place finish in the World Cup in the United States a decade earlier was still fresh in everyone's minds. There were also new headlines reporting the record breaking transfer fees and salaries paid out by clubs like Bayer Leverkusen and Tottenham Hotspur to those very same footballers who had dropped the ball in Portugal.

Sat, 12/01/2007 - 15:52


I have known Dancho since the beginning of the 1980s, when we used to have some friends in common, and met up at parties (or “stews” as they were referred to in those days). On two or three occasions we woke up after some heavy drinking on different, yet always alcohol-smeared sofas; and once, we even tried to have simultaneous intercourse with a girl known amongst the guys in our group for her inclination to do just that sort of thing every now and again.

Sat, 12/01/2007 - 13:50


Our calls and emails are ignored. The office numbers in Bulgaria are now unsubscribed, and his mobile has a message to say his phone is out of range. The company was Clipstone Limited, based in Varna.

We have been informed by the police that another couple in England have also had the misfortune to give him a substantial deposit for a Bulgarian apartment. The property for sale was a scam, and his web site has been taken off the Internet by the police.

Sat, 12/01/2007 - 13:18
John Beyrle.jpg


When i returned to Sofia as American ambassador in 2005 after a 20-year absence, I wasn’t sure how much change I would see. My wife Jocelyn and I had got to know the city fairly well during our assignment to the embassy in 1985-87, and although we had followed the political transformations from abroad during the intervening years, I had no idea how much remained of the Sofia that my memory had somewhat romanticised. Were the unique yellow bricks now covered with asphalt? Was there finally an underground metro?

Sat, 12/01/2007 - 11:59