Wasn’t that the title of a movie? Well, today it’s the title of my life.

You know how I am supposed to be “retired”, but I’m not really, so I keep looking for little jobs to do (and get paid for) here and there? Well, I had a job interview on Friday—which is a whole other story that cannot be written here. Suffice to say, the CEO (kids, a CEO of a company is THE BIG BOSS) cussed, swore, said bad words during the interview. I have never had that happen before in my life. But then again, I have never lived in Bulgaria before in my life. …

Anyways, I digress. I had the job interview which went very well. He would like to hire me, but we have a small problem. (Shhhhhh…..don’t tell anyone, but I don’t have all my “papers” here yet, so technically I’m not all the way legal, and certainly not legal enough to work. But we’re working on it, I promise, and soon it will all be fixed……I hope!) So he is going to try and figure out how to make things work until the “problem” gets fixed.

I decided I would walk home. I knew it would be a longer walk, about 4km, or 2 1/2 miles. But it wasn’t raining and I could use the exercise. I checked my handy dandy map and outlined the path home. Being the Magellan of Bulgaria, I decided to cut through a park as a shortcut. You know, like how Christopher Columbus took a short cut to the Indies and ended up on the other side of the world? Yeah. That’s the kind of shortcut I took.

So I hooked myself up to my iPod (by the way, the BEST gift I have EVER gotten) and grooved to my tunes as I began my descent into the park. In order for you to fully appreciate the experience, I must describe the park. You are thinking of a nice, big, freshly mowed green lawn with some paths and swingsets. No. Not here. The park is full of tall trees, almost like a mini-forest, with small dirt paths that travel as far as the eye can see. Every once in a while, another small dirt path intersects the main dirt path in a T. This T also stretches as far as the eye can see. Truthfully, you could easily hide a body in this park in broad daylight and nobody would notice. Did I mention the date was Friday the 13th?????


Onwards. I walked through the park for about 45 minutes and ended up….well, I don’t know where I ended up, on the other side I guess. On a street called Charles Darwin, which I could not for the life of me find on my map. So much for being more evolved than the apes.

I headed in the general direction of where I lived. Or so I thought.

And time passed. And my music played. And my feet walked and blistered. I was ready to admit it. I WAS LOST. So I decided I would give up and take a taxi home—really my only option since I don’t know how the bus system works yet. With my luck, had I attempted the bus system, I would have ended up in Romania or Serbia. Go ahead, look those countries up on a map. I know you don’t know where they are—you geographically-challenged Americans, you!

Back to the taxi. I knew I would probably find one on a busy street. So I headed out to a busy street. A real busy street. Turns out, it was so busy, it was the highway! And taxis don’t stop to pick people up on highways. So I kept walking and walking in my semi-high-heeled shoes and freshly operated-on foot (a nice combination indeed) on the side of a highway. I don’t know if you’ve ever walked on the side of a highway for a long period of time…I wouldn’t recommend it.  People mistake your true intentions.
Luckily, I can read Bulgarian pretty well, so I just followed the signs that said “Center” (I live in the “center” of town). Once I got down to where the highway met the town (I was clued in by a traffic light), I crossed over and tried to find a different busy street where I could find a taxi. I walked around here for a good long while. Up hills, down hills. Around cars and on uneven pavement. Finally, I found a busy street. But….are you ready for this? It was ONE WAY, going in the opposite direction. What are the odds? No, really, what are they?

I carried on walking, determined to find an intersection to get a cab. At long last, I reached that intersection, and when I finally lifted up my head, all dejected from my miserable failure at navigation, I saw I was at the Palace of Culture (called NDK here), just blocks from my house. And so I walked. Why give in now? I had come so far.

So, like Columbus, I, too sailed the ocean blue discovered the world was round.


And if you just keep sailing walking, you end up in a giant circle. In honor of Columbus, when I reached my flat, I decided to rename the native hound. He’s an “Indian” now. Just so you know.


(Our native “Indian” enjoying a ray of sunshine on our balcony.)