Thursday, 30 April 2009

May Day Starts A 6 Day Holiday In Bulgaria

Here in Bulgaria we begin May with a six day holiday period coming up. The first day of this is May Day, the old Labour and Solidarity that is celebrated, rather old hat in these anti-socialist times, but still carries on to the joy of thousands of Bulgarians.

The 6th of May is another big name, namely George Day ( probably the second biggest after Marta Name Day. Seems shame to break up these two speical days of celebration, so the Monday and Tuesday after the holiday weekend have been adopted as public holidays as well. These bridging public holiday have been borrowed as the 16th and 30th May, both Saturdays have to be worked in compensation.

Here is the run of play over the next six days in Bulgaria:

1 May - May Day, Labour and International Workers' Solidarity Day
2 May - Weekend Day (Saturday)
3 May - Weekend Day (Sunday)
4 May - Bridge Public Holiday (Compensated on 16th May)
5 May - Bridge Public Holiday (Compensated on 30th May
6 May - Saint George's Day - Day of the Bulgarian Army and Valour

The big party starts after work this evening for most Bulgarians - Myself included.

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Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Pig Flu Preperation In Bulgaria

It looks like Bulgaria is ready for the pig (swine) flu Epedemic that is spreading rapidly from it's source in Mexico. It is slightly worrying that they can't identify the virus in Bulgaria, but at least the isolation of potental carriers is now in place with medication at hand.

Bulgaria's health minister says his country has no facility to identify swine flu virus and will have to ask a foreign lab to test a suspected patient's sample.

Bulgarian Health Minister Evgeni Zhelev said all suspected cases will be placed in quarantine and patient tests will be sent to a lab recommended by the World Health Organization to determine the results, the Bulgarian Sofia news agency SNA said Tuesday.

Zhelev said Bulgaria has enough anti-flu medicines to deal with an epidemic. Hospitals and clinics were given strict instructions on what to do in case of a swine flu case, he said.

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Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Yambol Gypsy Gets Prison Sentence For Tearing Up Bulgarian Flag

Bulgarian Flag

This story was noted a few months ago when the youth concerned accused the policeman of physical abuse when he was arrested. The policeman was cleared int he courts and not the youth finds a prison sentence ahead of him. Whether the 'lie' of falsely accusing the policeman was taken into account remains open.

Justice has been done it seems from what accounts I have read. Tearing up your National flag is a serious offence here even thogh many Gypsies consider themselves non-Bulgarians. I assume that I would get the same sentence it I did this act as an expatriate.

Young Gets One Year Sentence for Desecrating Bulgarian Flag

Marin Dimitrov, aged 20, will serve a one year sentence behind bars after being found guilty Tuesday by the Yambol District Court for desecrating a Bulgarian flag.

The other four defendants on the case were all excused. This court decision however is going to be protested against by the Prosecution.

The incident took place on February 9th 2008, when around 3 AM a group of young Roma under the influence of alcohol after a night spent in a night club, decided to try and climb the flag pole at a local school in the village of Boyadzhik.

Once Marin Dimitrov was up on the pole as policeman, Mitko Chavdarov, arrived to the scene. This shocked the group and Dimitrov allegedly fell from the pole, tearing the flag as he went down. The group then resorted to a series of insults aimed at the policeman.

Three of the Roma filed complaints against him and initially Chavdarov was fined 1,000 leva (EUR500) by a Military Court, but the decision was later overrun by a second instance.

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Image by Klearchos Kapoutsis via Flickr

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Monday, 27 April 2009

Bulgarian Football League - CSKA Win

Having seen CSKA v Botev live on Bulgarian television yesturday I just coudl;nt' believe it was 0-1 at half time. The chances that were made by CSKA were numerous and they got caught just before the stroke of half time from a Botev free kick that wasn't cleared properly.

It took another 15 minutes in the second half and after more wasted chances to finally equalise and move into the lead with the help of the now vibrant supports at one end of the ground.

This was a hard earned win, but should have been made much easier is chances had been taken. I suppose Botev need to be complimented in some way for their defensive efforts.
All three Sofia teams hold the top three places with CSKA having the advantage to date.

2009-04-27 00:30
CSKA Sofia2-1Pfk Botev Plovdiv
Rui Miguel- '63 2-1
T.Yanchev- '59 1-1

0-1 45' -I.Garov
Short League Table

1CSKA Sofia23175156
2Levski Sofia23164352
3Lokomotiv Sofia24134743
4Liteks Lovech24126642
5Cherno More Varna23125641
CSKA Sofia

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Sunday, 26 April 2009

Earthquake Hits Bulgaria

Bulgaria is prone to earthquakes to the north and the south where the mountains hit the plains. This one last night is is in the North of the country along the line of the Balkan Mountains. This won't be the last, at least they are regular causing them to me not too severe. The longer you wait for them the bigger jolts you get.

A powerful earthquake measuring 5.3 on the Richter scale was felt in northern Bulgaria on Saturday evening around 8 p.m. local time (1800 GMT) in the areas of the cities of Dobrich, Pleven and Varna, local press reported.

Residents of many other cities and towns also reported feeling the shocks.

According to the Seismological Center with the Geophysical Institute of the Bulgarian Academy of Science, the epicenter of the earthquake was about 400 km southeast of Sofia in the region of Vrancha Mountain at Romanian territory.

There was no immediate report of casualties or property damages.

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Saturday, 25 April 2009

Gas Safety Net For Bulgaria

After Bulgaria was starved of gas earlier this year from Russia with the loss of millions to businesses, they now have a safety net to ensure another source. Egypt is the unlikely source and this was signed up today. Bulgaria now have a sigh of relief knowing that they will not now be totally reliant on Russia for supplies. This of course is after the horse had bolted for many businesses who had already folded because of this.

Bulgaria signed an agreement onSaturday to explore options of buying gas and liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Egypt as part of its quest to ease its heavy
dependence on Russian energy.
Bulgaria, the country worst hit by the January cut-off in Russian gas supplies, has also signed an agreement with neighbouring Greece at the Sofia summit on linking the two countries' gas networks and possibly building an LNG terminal
on the Greek Aegean coast.
Earlier this year, Bulgaria and Balkan neighbour Romania agreed to link their gas networks and Sofia is now seeking a similar deal with Turkey.
Sofia has previously said it was aiming for 1 billion cubic metres of Egyptian gas per year starting from 2011-2012. Bulgaria gets about 95-98 percent of its gas from Russia and the rest comes from its Galata offshore field in the Black

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Friday, 24 April 2009

Tougher Times Ahead Forecast For Bulgaria

International Monetary Fund

In a world recession it is no surprise that the economic forecast is painted bleak for Bulgaria. I think that many other countries in this world with a simliar foundation would also have the same predictions put on them. I feel this is a bit of news for the sake of it.

IMF sees Bulgaria economy shrinking, urges prudence

* IMF says Bulgaria economy is already contracting

* Sees GDP declining 3.5 percent in 2009, 1.0 percent in 2010

* Forecasts budget deficit unless spending cuts are made

* Fiscal surplus needed to bolster currency board
Bulgaria's growth of about 6 percent annually in the past few years has come at the expense of a huge current account deficit and private foreign debt, making the country exposed to the global cash squeeze.
The IMF said Bulgaria had considerable foreign currency and fiscal reserves and its banking system had remained stable due
to its prudent policy in the past few years.

Image via Wikipedia
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Thursday, 23 April 2009

Sign of the Times - Teenagers Murdered Rare in Bulgaria

It was such a shock when two teenagers were recently murdered in Sofia - This was bi big news here. Unlike the UK where this happens often the community it is a very rare in Bulgaria. I am afraid may have to get used to this as the influence of teenage violence from America and Western Europe take hold.

Hundreds Rally in Sofia in Remembrance of Double Murder Victims

Bulgaria: Hundreds Rally in Sofia in Remembrance of Double Murder Victims

Several hundred took part in a rally Wednesday to remember the two young Bulgarians who were killed before the Solo Club in downtown Sofia on April 18.

The rally started at the Slavia Stadium where the young hockey player Vazharov used to play, and reached the site of the double murder in front of the Solo Club.

Earlier Wednesday night the Sofia City Court ruled to keep behind bars the suspected murderer, the 22-year-old Iliyan Todorov, as the investigation of the case is still under way.

The 21-year-old Vasil Alexandrov, and 24-year-old Kiril Vazharov were killed in a fight between two allegedly drunk groups of young people in front of "Solo" club in downtown Sofia around 4 a.m. Saturday, police officials reported.

Both men were stabbed in the back while trying to get away from the fight. Vazharov was a goal keeper for Bulgaria's national ice hockey team.

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Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Cheap All Inclusive Bulgarian Holidays For Romanians

At 60 Bulgarian Leva for a two night inclusive package on the Black Sea Coast, who woudln't go there. It is a fact that the Romanians wil be offered the deal but not British who will still have to pay premium rates. No surprise there then.

Romanians head to Bulgaria for Easter

Cheap All Inclusive Bulgarian Holidays For Romanians
Reports indicate that up to 10 000 Romanians are planning to spend their Easter holidays in Bulgaria, where a two-nights, all-inclusive package could cost as little as 60 leva, according to a representative of Romania's national tourist agency association ANAT.

So far about 80 000 Romanians have bought Easter tourist packages, 30 000 of them for vacations abroad, Traian Bădulescu, an ANAT spokesperson announced.

The average prices for a one-person package this year are between 50 and 150 euro for Romania’s resorts and between 60 and 1000 euro for international destinations.

Bulgaria and Greece are Romanians’ favourite Easter holiday destinations, Bădulescu noted.

This year, the Eastern Orthodox Easter falls on April 19.


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Monday, 20 April 2009

Holy Water Travels To Bulgaria Fom Afar

I never knew about this until it was on the Bulgarian news, so I looked it up on the Internet and found out more about it. Bulgarian really do take Easter really seriously and it is almost on a par with Christmas.

Bulgaria Church Delegation to Bring Holy Easter Fire from Jerusalem

Bulgaria Bulgaria Church Delegation to Bring Holy Easter Fire from Jerusalem: Bulgaria Church Delegation to Bring Holy Easter Fire from Jerusalem

A delegation of clergymen from the Bulgarian Orthodox Church is expected to land at Sofia Airport in the evening on Holy Saturday bringing the Holy Easter Fire from Jerusalem. According to the Orthodox Church, its appearance cannot be explained scientifically. Thus, the Holy Easter Fire is believed to be one of the great miracles of the world. It appears after the prayer of the Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem.

The transfer of the Holy Fire from Jerusalem to Bulgaria is taking place for the fifth consecutive year. The fire will be brought to the St. Alexander Nevksi Cathedral in Sofia thirty minutes before midnight on Saturday.

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Thursday, 16 April 2009

Work Available in Yambo But No Interest

Maybe it's the feeble 175 Euro pay packet each month that puts Bulgarians off, but any work is better than no work at all. Also this time of the year many villagers are busy on the land, bad timing for recruting country based folk. I might even be interested myself if they would consider a Englishman with pigeon Bulgarian!
Despite the crisis a Japanese company in the Bulgarian town of Yambol is looking for 400 workers.

“Yazaki” company which produces cables for “Renault” cars has already appointed over 2500 people for less than two years.

For several days the Japanese are constantly placing job announcement for new employees from Yambol, Sliven and the whole region. Free transport and food are provided, writes The minimal wage in the plant s 175 euro.

The first two weeks the enterprise pays the training of the future workers.

The local government in Tundja municipality which comprises of 40 villages around Yambol has called the village mayors with a request to search for people to work in “Yazaki”.

Meanwhile the town of Sliven is covered with brochures of the company. However, there are not many people interested in working in the plant.

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Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Easter A Week Later Than Most In Bulgaria

It is Easter this Sunday 20th May, one week later than western Europe Australasia and the Americas. It is the second most important religious day of the year and is reflected in the traditions that are held in Bulgaria. Families get together and respect the reasons for Easter, we are not commercalised quite yet.

Bulgarian Easter - Easter is an Important Holiday in Bulgaria

Bulgarian Easter Eggs
Easter in Bulgaria is a strongly celebrated holiday. Red, the predominant color of Bulgarian Easter eggs, is a part of pagan mysticism that pervades Bulgarian culture even today. Red Easter eggs are baked into an Easter loaf, may be blessed at the church, or may be cracked against each other to see who will be the most successful, healthy, or happy during the following year.

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Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Bulgaria Win A Hard Fought Match

I saw the whole match, it was a tough one and to be quite honest if Cyprus had taken their chances, Bulgaria would have had egg on their faces. But football sometimes brings results due to luck. given theri due, Bulgaria held out and made the score look as if the match was easy - Far from it. Something for the fans to cheer about, they haven't had much to celebrate recently and were in good voice at the end of it, but wihtout any fingernails.

Bulgaria 2 - 0 Cyprus

Bulgaria 2-0 Cyrpus: Poor run comes to an end

Bulgaria overcame the absence of star striker Dimitar Berbatov and reignited their hopes of World Cup qualification with a hard-fought win over Cyprus in Sofia to claim their first victory in Group Eight.

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