As I settle in Toronto, I’ve been reminiscing about the decade I spent in Bulgaria.
I remember, especially in the beginning, that I wanted to return to the West. I didn’t speak the language and couldn’t understand why things moved so slowly.
My first invitation was to a village feast or, “praznik.” I recall going to a small chapel and sitting on its front stoop with village women. We sat there holding a single flower in our hands for more than an hour with no one uttering a word. I understood then that Bulgarians were people who appreciated and communicated in silence. Later, I gathered why there hadn’t been any men at the feast. The men celebrate “kukeri” or, carnival together. They dress up in animal skins and multi-colored, hand-painted or fur masks and, donning huge cow bells, walk down the middle of the village streets banging on pots. The point of the ritual is to bond as males while making their presence felt via loud noise.
Over time, I learned how to speak Bulgarian and began to understand the power of silence. I got used to watching the street lamps–with their soft, orange, anti-fog glow–contrast with swirling mists of precipitation and allowed my thoughts to slip into infinity, time immemorial or, urtime. I learned that communication happened differently than only with words. I began to feel the draw of silence and the mysteries that enfolded it.
Subterranean tunnels and time capsules
They say that Bulgaria has everything. This includes Noah’s plate (i.e., the plate Noah ate from while traveling in his ark), subterranean tunnels that crisscross the country, and time capsules. The plate is in Varna and the time capsules are at undisclosed locations, waiting for an unknown trigger that will activate them and enable people to make new, never-before-heard-of discoveries that will benefit both Bulgaria and the world.
One of Bulgaria’s most well-known psychics was a woman named Baba Vanga 1 which translates as Grandma Vanga. During her youth, she was caught up in a violent windstorm that left her blind. Ever since then, Baba Vanga developed the ability to “see” with an inner vision. Bulgarians from all walks of life would line up and wait for hours to meet with Baba Vanga, born Vangelia Pandeva Dimitrova, for healing and to learn what their future held. Well-known Bulgarian and foreign politicians visited her as well. Vanga had learned how to tap into Bulgarian urtime.
Image title and credit: “The Noah Plate,” Copyright © Dukaty Ltd., 2006