"I am an independent folklorist from Connecticut who has been researching and performing Bulgarian folk music since 1982. In 2000 I founded Patchwork Productions, Inc., a nonprofit organization committed to crosscultural education through the arts. I am currently working on a large-scale multimedia archival project on Bulgaria's traditional folk music. I have made many friends along the way. I recently designed and launched a website to present my work – www.patchworkproductions.org. To date, I have recorded in 31 villages, towns, and cities in the Shope, Pirin, and Dobrudzha regions.
"It was while I was working in Dobrudzha that I visited Cape Kaliakra. It was a very memorable trip, and the following is an excerpt from my journal:
"9 July 2006. Cape Kaliakra, close to the Romanian border: we wander amid Roman ruins and other relics of Bulgaria's ancient past and explore the medieval Thracian fortress built at its point on a vertical cliff. Legend has it that 40 Bulgarian girls tied their hair together and jumped to their deaths to avoid capture by the Turks. Today, the deeper waters of the Black Sea are very blue; closer to the base of the cliffs, it's very green. We spend some time watching a small group of dolphins skimming the waves before heading back.
"I actually discovered VAGABOND by accident when I was doing some research on family relationships (specifically, different words for "aunt") and came across your funny and informative article, "Confusingly Big Happy Family". I spent the rest of that afternoon exploring the magazine's website and reading many current and archived articles. It was then that I came across your Where In Bulgaria Are You? contest and decided to enter. I am very impressed with everything about VAGABOND. It is both very useful and entertaining and has become one of my most frequented bookmarks.
"Congratulations on a terrific magazine – keep up the good work!"
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Write to us. Our Letter of the Month will receive the photo album Bulgaria. North Coast by Juri Tscharyiski with stunning pictures from the northern Black Sea coast. The book can be bought at the Balgarski knizhitsi bookshop at 10 Aksakov St, Sofia.