Too much to say to even begin. Luckily someone else began for me, and I just have to translate.
"American Falls in Love with Omurtag"
by Mariana Tosheva, Trud (newspaper), June 15, 2006
translation and notes by: me.
With banitsa [traditional greasy bready thing], shopska salad [traditional salad of cucumbers, tomatoes, and feta cheese], yogurt [Bulgaria’s pride], and a sip of rakiya [the national alcohol of choice], Jessica Goldberg’s friends from Omurtag will send her off on June 20. [it’s really the 18th, but who’s counting?]
The 25-year-old Peace Corps volunteer spent two years in the town. Jessica works as an English teacher in the local high school, Simeon Velchev.
"Here I feel at home. I even think in Bulgarian. When I woke up from anesthesia after an operation, the first words I said were Bulgarian," says Jessica. Now she says that she will miss our country with its beautiful towns and nature.
The young American is impressed by how many holidays we have and how people know how to have a good time, to appreciate every moment with their friends without hurrying anywhere. On her birthday two months ago more than 30 people gathered, while in America parties are more formal. [I didn't make that exact comparison, but it's definitely the biggest birthday party I've had where everyone was a friend (i.e. without random people showing up just for the beer).]
On her part, Jess continually repeats to her Bulgarian friends that they have to change their way of thinking. "I hear that something won’t happen more often than I hear that it has to happen."
For now, Jessica doesn’t know where she’ll go after Omurtag. In the near future she plans to study for a PhD in literature.
She’s already been to Israel and to Scotland, but she wants to return to Bulgaria. In the states she intends to seek Bulgarians with whom she can speak our language and keep in contact with our country.
[color photo included, yay]