February 7, 2005: Headlines: COS - Bulgaria: Blogs - Bulgaria: Personal Web Site: this Bulgarian life by Eric Wiley

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Bulgaria: Peace Corps Bulgaria: The Peace Corps in Bulgaria: February 7, 2005: Headlines: COS - Bulgaria: Blogs - Bulgaria: Personal Web Site: this Bulgarian life by Eric Wiley

By Admin1 (admin) (pool-151-196-48-182.balt.east.verizon.net - on Saturday, February 12, 2005 - 1:13 pm: Edit Post

this Bulgarian life by Eric Wiley

this Bulgarian life by Eric Wiley

this Bulgarian life by Eric Wiley

Goldie (February 7 2005)
I went to a drum n' bass show this past friday in Sofia. it was Goldie spinning all metalheadz dub-plates at a club called Spartacus: usually a gay venue and Bulgarians here often look at you funny when you say that you went there for a show. Different culture here, less sensitive to these things generally than where I am from. I wore ear-protection, the bass was deep, and I danced until 5:30 in the morning. Charles Lim (from LA) and Sara Pack (from New Hampshire) went with me and we went out to an all night place to eat after the show before all crashing at Sara's apartment. Charles is a drum n' bass fanatic, and it was Sara's first time. I am somewhere in-between, probably. We all loved it. I didn't stay too long in Sofia, returning on a Saturday afternoon train, starting a novel on the train - Lullaby by Chuck Palahniuk. and the remainder of the weekend, Saturday night and Sunday, I spent in my apartment cooking and reading (finishing Lullaby and returning to my other reading). Now it's monday, the week feels like it will be quick. Next week is a retreat/meeting/training in the spa resort town of Bankya (near Sofia). Myself and the other 50-something volunteers from my group each with a Bulgarian counterpart will be attending. I am excited for it, mostly just to get away and do something different for a week, and of course to see some friends.

snowballs and masonry January 31 2005
The weekend in Sofia was fabulous. I saw friends who I have not seen for two months. Lots of talking, joking, catching up. Played in the snow, threw snowballs at advertisements - mostly of women in bikinis because it was the most funny and there were sooo many targets for it. Work at the Habitat site was fun, I built a brick wall for an air vent in the bathroom with another volunteer also named Eric. Not very efficient use of materials on this project, lots and lots of masonry, but probably it is difficult to get wood or metal framing and sheet-rock here - I need to ask about this. The support officer for Habitat for Humanity, Jeff Abbott, approached me with a thought for a project - to develop fast, cheap, expandable, beautiful, owner constructed dwelling units in collaboration with the Roma community. Brilliant, I told him. Am trying to get started on it this week. Research, making contacts, getting the municipality interested, conceptualizing. There was a lot of snow in Sofia, and it was colder than in Karlovo. I went to the foreign art museum. Some of it was closed, but I was excited to find some of '36 views of Mt. Fugi,' drawings by Diego Rivera, some abstract african figurines and masks, egyptian miniature painting. It's 2:00, and the remainder of this afternoon is for doing laundry in the kitchen sink, drinking wine, cooking, and doing some research on the internet from home.

a weekend and a week passed (January 28 2005)
Strange weather here this week. Cold, warm, cold, warm, cold. Rain, snow, sun and spring temperatures, and snow predicted again for the weekend. I was ill - well really only congested this week - never really felt sick. I have been waiting waiting waiting for the meeting to discuss the info/ad/lantern structures. Grew tired of waiting a few times and took off from work, once, for a lovely hike in the mountains to hum sad songs and explore from a height above Karlovo the familiar places below, and the space and things between them. I played chess with Alexander at his apartment on a smallish plastic/magnetic board with magnetic pieces, we drank strawberry juice canned by his family from the summer and ate white/brown chocolate. His apartment has lots of rooms, strange rooms, mostly empty. One of them he uses for dancing and there is a chandelier right in the middle where you would hit your head if you were not careful. I told him that it was a perfect space for practicing the waltz (stay out of the middle or hit your head).
The past weekend, Jennifer came for a visit from Friday afternoon until late Sunday morning. We hiked in the rain at night to a waterfall and looked at big rocks, cooked cooked cooked - perfect-omelets and pretty-meatballs, baked brownies, sat in the new bus shelters and imagined the sea, played with matches - giggling, flew paper airplanes that we drew and made wishes on from my balcony, swam/floated in warm mineral water, explored the creepy but exciting basement of my building, tried to put out a dumpster fire with my fire extinguisher (to no avail), watched the goonies - classic, and garden state - strange, lots lots lots of fun. It is great to have friend, a good good friend.
Tonight I am having dinner with Yadira and Emily and Mary who will visit Yadira from Plovdiv for the weekend. We will have a kind of chocolate sauce called mola on chicken, a recipe from Mexico I think. And tomorrow I will go to Sofia first thing, first bus, early. I am volunteering to work on the Habitat for Humanity project again, the same one I worked on two months ago. After that, sushi. I heard that there is a Japanese restaurant that just opened in Sofia and I am going to check it out. I don't have too too high hopes, but am excited for it. I will meet Stephanie to eat and then we will probably go out for all night dancing at a disco - a night of - as we like to say jokingly & too often - gettin' durty and crunk.

When this story was posted in February 2005, this was on the front page of PCOL:

The Peace Corps Library Date: February 7 2005 No: 438 The Peace Corps Library
Peace Corps Online is proud to announce that the Peace Corps Library is now available online. With over 27,000 index entries in 430 categories, this is the largest collection of Peace Corps related stories in the world. From Acting to Zucchini, you can use the Main Index to find hundreds of stories about what RPCVs with your same interests or from your Country of Service are doing today.
Bush's FY06 Budget for the Peace Corps Date: February 7 2005 No: 436 Bush's FY06 Budget for the Peace Corps
The White House is proposing $345 Million for the Peace Corps for FY06 - a $27.7 Million (8.7%) increase that would allow at least two new posts and maintain the existing number of volunteers at approximately 7,700. Bush's 2002 proposal to double the Peace Corps to 14,000 volunteers appears to have been forgotten. The proposed budget still needs to be approved by Congress.

February 5, 2005: This Week's Top Stories Date: February 5 2005 No: 420 February 5, 2005: This Week's Top Stories
Peace Corps swears in 12 new Country Directors 4 Feb
Kenneth Hawkinson studies oral traditions of Mali 4 Feb
Tony Hall urges politicians to bring religious faith to office 4 Feb
Dodd opposes Gonzales nomination 3 Feb
Dr. Robert Zeigler to head Rice Research Institute 3 Feb
Taylor Hackford going into television with "E-Ring" 2 Feb
President Bush's past promises in State of the Union 1 Feb
Moreigh Wolf says gays cannot volunteer with partners 1 Feb
Coleman to chair Peace Corps Subcommittee 1 Feb
Vasquez assesses need in Southeast Asia 31 Jan
James Bullington says Bush Inaugural speaks to PC 31 Jan
Allen Andersson creates foundation to promote libraries 31 Jan
Joseph Opala to film "Priscilla's Homecoming" 31 Jan
Donna Shalala embarks on aggressive UM expansion 31 Jan
Thomas Dichter says Poor Countries Need Smarter Aid 30 Jan
Alberto Ibargüen to head Knight Foundation 28 Jan
Helen Sheehy organizes "Endangered Peoples" exhibit 28 Jan

RPCVs mobilize support for Countries of Service Date: January 30 2005 No: 405 RPCVs mobilize support for Countries of Service
RPCV Groups mobilize to support their Countries of Service. Over 200 RPCVS have already applied to the Crisis Corps to provide Tsunami Recovery aid, RPCVs have written a letter urging President Bush and Congress to aid Democracy in Ukraine, and RPCVs are writing NBC about a recent episode of the "West Wing" and asking them to get their facts right about Turkey.
RPCVs contend for Academy Awards  Date: January 31 2005 No: 416 RPCVs contend for Academy Awards
Bolivia RPCV Taylor Hackford's film "Ray" is up for awards in six categories including best picture, best actor and best director. "Autism Is a World" co-produced by Sierra Leone RPCV Douglas Biklen and nominated for best Documentary Short Subject, seeks to increase awareness of developmental disabilities. Colombian film "El Rey," previously in the running for the foreign-language award, includes the urban legend that PCVs teamed up with El Rey to bring cocaine to U.S. soil.
Ask Not Date: January 18 2005 No: 388 Ask Not
As our country prepares for the inauguration of a President, we remember one of the greatest speeches of the 20th century and how his words inspired us. "And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you--ask what you can do for your country. My fellow citizens of the world: ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man."
Coleman: Peace Corps mission and expansion Date: January 8 2005 No: 373 Coleman: Peace Corps mission and expansion
Senator Norm Coleman, Chairman of the Senate Subcommittee that oversees the Peace Corps, says in an op-ed, A chance to show the world America at its best: "Even as that worthy agency mobilizes a "Crisis Corps" of former Peace Corps volunteers to assist with tsunami relief, I believe an opportunity exists to rededicate ourselves to the mission of the Peace Corps and its expansion to touch more and more lives."
RPCVs active in new session of Congress Date: January 8 2005 No: 374 RPCVs active in new session of Congress
In the new session of Congress that begins this week, RPCV Congressman Tom Petri has a proposal to bolster Social Security, Sam Farr supported the objection to the Electoral College count, James Walsh has asked for a waiver to continue heading a powerful Appropriations subcommittee, Chris Shays will no longer be vice chairman of the Budget Committee, and Mike Honda spoke on the floor honoring late Congressman Robert Matsui.
RPCVs and Peace Corps provide aid  Date: January 4 2005 No: 366 Latest: RPCVs and Peace Corps provide aid
Peace Corps made an appeal last week to all Thailand RPCV's to consider serving again through the Crisis Corps and more than 30 RPCVs have responded so far. RPCVs: Read what an RPCV-led NGO is doing about the crisis an how one RPCV is headed for Sri Lanka to help a nation he grew to love. Question: Is Crisis Corps going to send RPCVs to India, Indonesia and nine other countries that need help?
The World's Broken Promise to our Children Date: December 24 2004 No: 345 The World's Broken Promise to our Children
Former Director Carol Bellamy, now head of Unicef, says that the appalling conditions endured today by half the world's children speak to a broken promise. Too many governments are doing worse than neglecting children -- they are making deliberate, informed choices that hurt children. Read her op-ed and Unicef's report on the State of the World's Children 2005.

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Story Source: Personal Web Site

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Bulgaria; Blogs - Bulgaria



By eric wiley (193-151-81-250.rozabg.com - on Sunday, June 12, 2005 - 11:19 am: Edit Post

go to http://homepage.mac.com/ericwiley/bulgaria.html to see the complete blog - this is only an excerpt here.

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