Hello everyone :)
So this last week, we spent some time in a city called Montana (Монтана), which is about 2 hours from Sofia. We lead worship with the people of the church our first Sunday morning there, and met some really great people :) Bulgarians don't know how friendly they are. We've experienced SO much warmth here, I love it.
Each day we had a place to visit.
Monday morning, we visited a kindergarden. We spent some time with the kids & played games, (the language barrier with 3 year olds is even worse, 'Simon Says' was a trainwreck, hahahaha) and then met with the principal of the school & learned about the Bulgarian school process and had a little question & answer time - complete with bonitsa, coffee & chocolate, 3 things a good Bulgarian would NEVER go without. (aka, we keep eating, & they keep offering, and we keep eating, and by the end we don't even want lunch.)
Tuesday morning, we went to a nursing home way out in the country. We gave our testimonies & sang some songs for them & just spent some time talking (attempting to talk) with them. They sang for us too, some told us about their grandkids, but most just wanted to know about America and were so impressed with us for coming to Bulgaria. Everyone is so curious about why we would ever come to a country like theirs... and I never know what to say. I just tell them I really like it here, cause I do! Of course we ended the morning with a meeting with the director & coffee & chocolate & bonitsa, surprise surprise ;) - SIDE NOTE -This took me back to when I was a kid, and my Grandmommy would take me to nursing homes to sing for all the grandmas & grandpas :) And the time I sang for some of her friends from a truck bed in the middle of a Cracker Barrel parking lot in some random interstate town on the way to Texas... THATS RIGHT GRANDMOMMY, don't think I forgot ;) And all that experience really paid off in Bulgaria!! Who woulda thought! Hahaha. Anyway, being there also brought back all my 'I think I want to go into Music Therapy' feelings even stronger. I've been looking at schools again. Maybe in a perfect world, I could practice in other countries? Is that a thing? I don't know. Maybe I'll just make it a thing :)
Wednesday morning we visiting a similar nursing home, but it was for the blind. It was a little harder to swallow, and we didn't get to spend as much time with them. But I met a man who spoke German! So we counted on our fingers in Bulgarian, German, Spanish & English. He kept asking me for whiskey. I told him I'd sneak it for him if I had any... hahaha the nurses didn't really like that, oh well. And then we were wisked away for coffee & chocolate. Some times people took pictures of us? Which was odd. Its so clear how few & far between Americans are in this country.
Luckily our afternoons were wonderfully relaxing, we spent some time at the pool with some of the teens from the Montana church, and a few evenings we spent with members who offered to make dinner for us. After dinner, we hung out at a pool hall with some of the girls from the church, and turns out, I'm pretty good at darts!! I had no idea. But my air-hockey skills are lacking. Oh well.
Friday afternoon we headed back to Sofia, which was a really nice change from the 2 weeks of chaos :) Sofia feels like home at this point. Its getting so close to time to leave... its really crazy. We said goodbye to our high school friends & our middle school friends, which was really sad, but also really weird. I didn't cry, but i felt unsettled. Sometimes if I think about how sad it is that there are people in this world that I may never ever see again? Ever? I get all bent out of shape & depressed. So we are just going to try our best to keep in touch over FB. I loved these kids. Oh, wait - these 'young adults' :)
Since Monday, we've been getting ready for our kids camp coming up this Monday-Friday (July 25-29). Its been wonderfully relaxed, so I got to sleep late, buy some souvenirs, got some 'me' time, and I explored Sofia even more. I really love parts of this city. I found a really great artsy area that I fell in love with - but OF COURSE I find it 3 days before its time to leave. :( Otherwise I've been planning craft time, each of us are teaching a bible study, we're singing songs & making lunch, and we're gonna be sweating to death. A W&W team is coming from Salem, Washington to be with us all week, so it should be so great!! We're picking them up from the airport in the AM to give them a short tour of Sofia, then we're headed to Стубел (the village we've been to 3 times now, right outside of Montana) tomorrow afternoon after church.
Then when we get back from Stubel (Стубел) next Monday, we have one day - ONE DAY- left in Sofia.
On Aug 3 we're catching the night train to Croatia.
America, I'll see you soon.