Instability is set to continue, so are plummeting living standards
A poster advertising GERB's leader Boyko Borisov, who was prime minister twice in the past 10 years, appeared for a few days on billboards along Bulgaria's highways and on posters posted outside GERB offices in some towns. Borisov, whose candidate, Tsetska Tsacheva lost bitterly to Ret Gen Rumen Radev in the presidential election last year thus prompting her boss to resign and invoke a snap election, appears stern as ever, wearing a general's uniform and posing in front of the Bulgarian national flag. Before taking up politics Borisov was in the protection business, then became this country's top policeman.
The factories worked and everyone had a job, there was no crime, the army was strong and every family had two-week holidays at the seaside: for a significant number of Bulgarians, Communism was a golden era of prosperity and security that outshone democracy, with its freedom of movement, speech and entrepreneurship. It is not only the generations who were young during Communism that feel this way. Many Bulgarians born too late to have first-hand experience of the regime share the same sentiment.
There is a day in Bulgaria when the cities and villages seem awash with blossoming flowers. The flower stalls stock more of their seasonal and all-the-year-round blooms than usual, and the number of pop-up flower sellers on the pavements increases. People carrying bouquets and bunches of pussy willow branches are everywhere.
Only the best is good enough for the company that engineers, produces and exports aluminium profiles to all corners of the globe, from New York to Singapore, and is a long term partner to prestige automakers such as BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Audi
Tall and oval, covered with diamond-shaped patterns, and formidably leaning: there is hardly anyone who has not noticed the building rising on the capital’s entrance from Tsarigradsko Shosse Boulevard.
The crowds gathered in the freezing spring night on the historical hill of Tsarevets, in Veliko Tarnovo, were awaiting Easter. Midnight was approaching, but for the moment it seemed that Easter would never come. On the top of the hill, in front of the church whose silhouette is known to every tourist in this country, a priest was well into a long and tedious sermon on faith, the importance of unification, and a bit of current (meaning 2016) politics, and he showed no signs of being near the end.
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According to a local legend, Varvara village got its name in Antiquity. Back then, wayward Thracians used to live on this rocky part of the Black Sea shore. Raids and pillage were their main sources of income, and their neighbours, from the rich Greek town of Agatopolis, were their usual victims. As a retribution for the raids, the Greeks called the Thracian settlement Varvara, the place of the Barbarians.