Friday, 21 December 2012

Sofia

As I emerged daily from the Rotasar Hotel, to go for a coffee or to take photos, it still felt kind of strange to think I was now living here. I had become an immigrant !
The Rotasar is a modest hotel with friendly staff, situated just off the Tsarigradsko Chaussee Boulevard which sweeps down to the centre of Sofia. 
On the Tuesday I set off with my camera to walk to Borrisova Gradina Park and Garden, also known as the Central Park, which was a delightful experience. Central Park stretches along the boulevard all the way into Sofia near the Eagle's Bridge. 
The weather was brighter and sunnier, I soon became aware that I would need my summer clothes which were packed away in the garage in Rudartsi. This later necessitated buying a pair of light jeans. But there was still rain in the air as I walked into the welcome green away from the traffic. I spent some time is this lovely park, gradually making my way along the tree lined paths, passing what seemed like hundreds of  interesting statues and sculptures, to the Ariana Lake at the far end near the National Stadium Vassil Levski. Of course this sojourn included a welcome Shumensko Beer in a leafy setting just outside the Bulgarian Army Stadium, the home of CSKA Sofia FC.
Here are some photos:-











On the 31st May from near the hotel I experienced my first ride in the shuttle buses that ply their trade throughout the city. It could have been a better experience. I am not very tall but I spent the whole of the ride doubled up and bent at an uncomfortable angle in a minibus which was getting hotter inside by the second. Margarita was smiling as my English stiff upper lip (which I don't really possess, at least I don't think so) was curling under my sweat ridden brow. These minibuses cram as many people in them as possible. It really was a relief to get off. But at 1 Lev for the trip maybe I should not have expected luxury. We were on our way to Pernik to sign for the house.

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