Overall, I loved my Bulgaria travels. I loved seeing Alex and Vera. I loved the break from continual business. I loved a visit back to Western culture and the Western idea of the proper way to relate to each other. I loved the stories of Bulgaria in World War II, how it protected its Jewish people and took advantage of Hitler's blind hate. I loved the peace between religions and how they existed without fighting between themselves.
On a bit of the negative side, I am sorry to report that my experiences with the airlines left the trip with a bit of discomforted color. While I've enjoyed my travels with Turkish Airlines, I've learned that that's only if you don't need to talk to any of the people who work for it, whether for compliment or complaint, and Heaven help you if you lose something. As for the Sofia airport, I think I may like it the least of any airport in which I'd ever spent time. In fact, I like it even less than I like the Bangor, Maine airport. If it wasn't for the fact that the Sofia airport is the only way I can see Alex and Vera, I would avoid the country entirely in order to avoid the Sofia airport, which is much the same way I feel about the Bangor airport. Somehow, it is always the tiny airports that feel the need to have the stringent security. In Sofia, I was mocked for not having my Korean VISA up to date, even though it was updated electronically, as noted on my green card, which I pointed out to the woman, but she was unable to read the handwriting, I guess. At any rate, she felt the need to hold up the line and bring others in on the joke, only one of whom managed to point out the legitimacy of my claim. I could go on about the tardiness of the flight, causing the running of almost every passenger at our layover. I could go on about the lack of hep within the airport. I could go on about the lack of employees of the airport and the tardiness of the opening of the gates. I could. But I'm not one to write a long post of complaints. I will merely suggest that you fly Singapore Airlines as much as possible while in Asia, and bring your patience with you when visiting the Sofia airport.
In spite of that, I still thoroughly enjoyed my trip, and I would still visit the country as long as I had a friend there to welcome me. Without there presences, I don't know if I would return. There's not much by way of tourism, there, and it's not a country to visit as a single woman traveler, for sure (as it is a major hub for human trafficking), so you see the need for a welcoming party, I trust. Nonetheless, as long as Alex and Vera are there, I know the country will hold a draw for me, and maybe even after, as my heart is still tied to those little faces and hugging arms.
Soon, I'll start updating you on more recent goings-on. Be sure to keep me appraised of yours! :)