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 Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria

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PostSubject: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Wed Nov 30, 2011 9:23 am

[size=55:2jrfhl0p]The Telegraph

Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria

As I sat in my classroom at school, having just told my teachers and friends that I was moving to Bulgaria after the Christmas holidays, halfway through my GCSEs, I began to hear and sense the criticism around me. I often heard people asking me, "
What will you do about your GCSEs?"
and saying, "
You are making such a big mistake moving to Bulgaria!"
But it was not as if I was being forced into moving to Bulgaria, and I wasn't missing out on anything in England, either.

I arrived in Bulgaria with my parents and younger sister as we moved in to our new home there. Initially, it was hard to establish a routine in my life, but I started having lessons in Bulgarian and also studying to take the GCSEs I had missed.

There was never a point at which I thought, "
This is the difficult stage of the move"
, because every part was an experience and I loved every moment of it. But I was having problems making friends, as language lessons seemed to hold me back from practising Bulgarian beyond the safety of the classroom.

I decided to stop going to lessons and integrated more with the local people. I began to pick up the language more quickly and in a more relaxed way than in those set lessons.

Within four months of living in Bulgaria, I had picked up some basic phrases, met a few people and settled into the way of doing things. What I didn't have at this point was friends or career prospects. In fact, I didn't know where to get either of these things from. Luckily an English couple that lived near to us gave me the number to a private language school that wanted a native speaking English teacher. Although I was just 16, the manager of the school liked my new ideas and way of working with the students of all ages.

The head teacher hired me to teach various classes and I began to make lots of friends and earned decent money. I eventually moved into an apartment nearer to where I worked and lived there for about a year on my own. By this point I was just 17 and had already spent a year working as teacher of English as a second language and was living in an apartment where I could afford to pay all the bills and the rent. I spent two-and-a-half years teaching for the school and had lots of fun, learnt new things and most importantly, I met some great people.

But unfortunately, the financial crisis hit the school hard and many of the younger students who also took English lessons at their state school decided that that was enough. This resulted in me either having fewer hours or not working at all, so I decided to leave.

I moved out of my apartment and back in with my parents and sister. Initially, I didn't like the idea of giving up everything I had worked for but I was happy to be around the people who lived near to my parents and who I had known since I moved to Bulgaria. Within a year of finishing my teaching job, I had started doing interpreting and translation for various English-speaking expats in the area. I would have never have thought about going in to work as a translator or interpreter, but I loved the thrill that I could help people and communicate with both the English and Bulgarian speakers. The work was very fulfilling and rewarding. I was getting paid well and was quite busy with work, even though I was only working for friends and people I already knew.

Then, after speaking to someone, they told me that I should pursue a career in interpreting/translating, as there is a huge shortage of English people who understand Bulgarian and therefore there is a shortage of Bulgarian-English translators. Not only that, but I found that many British people and companies preferred to deal with an English person who spoke Bulgarian, rather than a Bulgarian who speaks English, because it makes them feel more comfortable in the situation.

I loved translating and interpreting and decided that I would find work doing that, rather than the English teaching that I had also enjoyed doing. I spent money investing in my translation business here in Veliko Turnovo in central Bulgaria.

I had a website made, I had business cards and flyers printed and I also invested in some specialist dictionaries. Within a week of the site going online, I had already got my money back and made a profit, too.

I work from home and sometimes travel out to do various interpreting jobs. Some projects mean that I have to spend more of my time working on one subject, where as other times I can complete the translation within a day and have time to do something else. Every day is different and I never do the same type of project twice.

As for my life in Bulgaria, I really enjoy all aspects of it.

I was lucky that I was young enough to settle into life here, because it could have been more difficult if I had been older.

In my free time I enjoy spending time with my friends, going out to coffee shops, visiting Bulgaria's amazing shopping malls and also going to the beach.

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PostSubject: Re: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Wed Nov 30, 2011 11:05 am

What a great story. Just goes to show what you can achieve, no matter what others say! s
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PostSubject: Re: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Wed Nov 30, 2011 1:00 pm

Just read this article in this weeks Expat Telegraph. It is pretty amazing for someone so young to achieve so much, not least understanding enough Bulgarian to work as a translator. Her name is Luisa Kearney and she is living in Veliko Turnovo and I wonder if anyone knows her or used her services. Its a small world. s
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PostSubject: Re: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Wed Nov 30, 2011 4:18 pm

I've just finished reading it in the Telegraph also.
I'm sure I read a similar article by the same person on Quest Bulgaria a few months ago.
Good on her though. g
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PostSubject: Re: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Wed Nov 30, 2011 4:37 pm

Well call me an old sceptic if you like - but I find it pretty hard to believe that a 16 year old could get a job teaching English in a school after such a short time of being a pupil herself and especially learning enough Bulgarian to act as a translator for Brits. Look up her name on Google search. If its all true it is certainly a big achievement. You must know her Chris if she had an article in Quest magazine.
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PostSubject: Re: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Thu Dec 01, 2011 12:04 am

Admin T What a great story and what an achievement g. I will ask if any of our friends know of her in VT could be they use her for translation you never know. g

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PostSubject: Re: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Sat Dec 03, 2011 4:56 pm

I've just re-read Luisa's story in the Expat Telegraph on Facebook and it is really amazing. When I scrolled down to 'related articles' I see there is one from me written in 2007! How odd life is.
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PostSubject: Re: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Sun Dec 04, 2011 11:40 am

Having read all this and looked at her website I see she offers translation for all sorts of documents? which I can't understand since as far as I know you need to be a certified interpretor in Bulgaria for certain documents especially anything to do with Birth certs, marriage, Property etc and I can't see anywhere that she states she is a registered translator? so this would mean having to pay twice? Maybe I'm wrong so can anyone tell me what the situation is regarding translation of official documents .
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PostSubject: Re: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Sun Dec 04, 2011 12:10 pm

there is a difference between a translator and an interpreter. a translator deals with written words and an interpreter deals with the spoken words. so im not sure which you are reffering to.
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PostSubject: Re: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Sun Dec 04, 2011 12:23 pm

Sorry my mistake on her website she says "
We are a translation agency"
and that she can translate the following

We translate:

-Newspaper, magazines and other press materials
-Official documents (birth certificates, ID, driving license etc.)
-Legal documents (contracts, insurance, legal, property and finance)
-Summary translations of large amounts of text
-Book translations (summarised or whole book translation)


But my understanding is that for any legal translation to be valid it needs to be done by a certified translator that is recognised in Bulgaria?
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PostSubject: Re: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Sun Dec 04, 2011 12:43 pm

a translator does not have to be accredited, it is the documents that has to have an accredited translation, thats when it is signed by the translator as accurate and a notary verifies its authority, these translations can be used in places like a court. :Great:legal doccuments.

there will be occassions when you will need an authorized interpreter such as being interviewed by the police or court matters and even signing for your property, only an authorized interpreter can do this. g
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PostSubject: Re: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Sun Dec 04, 2011 12:48 pm

I was asking because I got this information from the embassy site

What is the difference between Legal (official) and legalized translation?

Legal (official) translation is made by a certified translator on a form sheet of the authorized translation agency, having translator's signature and the stamp of the agency. Legalized translation does not only comply with the above requirements, but is also authenticated by the competent state authorities and is legalized by the Consular department of the Foreign Affairs in the last instance.
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PostSubject: Re: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Sun Dec 04, 2011 12:57 pm

My understanding is on occasions you may wish to ensure that the person you are using has a formal legal obligation to get things exactly right. Sometimes Bulgarian law will require you to use a formally qualified sworn translator. Individuals who perform this sort of translation are required to undergo extensive formal legal training and have to be registered with a certified translation agency (certified by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs) before undertaking this work.
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PostSubject: Re: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Sun Dec 04, 2011 2:10 pm

Not to sure myself now I come to think of it. Anyhow whatever this young lady is to be congratulated for her efforts, just as is our own Louise (mechta) who is probably the same sort of age, however we must all allow common sense to prevail, what I mean is no one is going to use the services of a young girl with very little experience to translate anything really important even though these particular 2 girls both have great skills.
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PostSubject: Re: Onwards and Upwards in Bulgaria   Sun Dec 04, 2011 2:15 pm

There seems to be a dichotomy of opinions here. I am with Noddy because when I bought our property back in 2004 all the documents were translated and then stamped by the translator who had an official stamp to show they were acredited by the authorities. I doubt if many Brits would know this to be the case, I certainly didn't at the time. Surely a Notary would not sign legal papers if the translator was not known to them as official - but then, this is Bulgaria and rules here are often broken.
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